More than 60 dead in Philippines storm

Posted January 02, 2019

"The deaths were mostly due to landslides", Posadas added.

Fifty of the victims were killed in five provinces in the eastern region of Bicol, which bore the brunt of heavy rains brought by a tropical depression, authorities say.

At least 17 people are still missing and more than 40,000 were displaced nationwide due to the storm, the civil defence office said.

In nearby Tiwi town, also in Albay province, four people were also killed in a separate landslide, the regional disaster relief agency said.

Rescue teams were still searching for several missing in the affected areas, emergency officials said.

While the storm has been downgraded to a low-pressure system, monsoon rain may still trigger floods and landslides, the weather bureau said.

The storm affected almost 190,000 people, officials said, with dozens of areas facing power outages as a result of infrastructure damage.

"People were overconfident because they were on vacation mode and there was no tropical cyclone warning", Bicol civil defence director Claudio Yucot said.

Almost 25,000 people were displaced by the landslides and floods in 13 provinces, according to the agency.

Thousands of travelers were left stranded at airports, seaports and bus terminals after several domestic flights and ferry services were canceled, Reuters reported.

"Usman" eventually weakened into a low pressure area after it hit land in Eastern Samar Saturday morning.

Dozens of people were killed this weekend as Tropical Depression Usman swept over the central Philippines, triggering landslides and flooding.

An average of 20 typhoons and storms lash the Philippines each year, killing hundreds of people and leaving millions in near perpetual poverty.