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Deadly Storm Hits Philippines: Death Toll ‘At Least 53’

Residents look at flooded houses from a bridge in Bgy. Sihayon, Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental on Monday after heavy downpour brought by tropical storm Seniang. Seniang made landfall in Surigao del Sur and is bringing heavy rains in Northern Mindanao.
Residents look at flooded houses from a bridge in Bgy. Sihayon, Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental on Monday after heavy downpour brought by tropical storm Seniang. Seniang made landfall in Surigao del Sur and is bringing heavy rains in Northern Mindanao. © ABS-CBN

As the world celebrates 2015 New Year, tropical storm “Seniang” has caused grief and severe devastation among families affected by its strength.

The death toll from flash floods and landslides in the Philippines brought by tropical storm Jangmi (Seniang) rose to 53, officials said, with some regions saying they were caught off guard by the flood.

Local officials in Catbalogan town in Samar province said 19 people died in a landslide that left homes and vehicles buried under rocks and mud.

Residents look at flooded houses from a bridge in Bgy. Sihayon, Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental on Monday after heavy downpour brought by tropical storm Seniang. Seniang made landfall in Surigao del Sur and is bringing heavy rains in Northern Mindanao.
Residents look at flooded houses from a bridge in Bgy. Sihayon, Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental on Monday after heavy downpour brought by tropical storm Seniang. Seniang made landfall in Surigao del Sur and is bringing heavy rains in Northern Mindanao. © ABS-CBN

The town’s mayor said: “There was no evacuation, people were just advised to prepare for possible landslides.”

The Philippines is hit by about 20 large storms every year. The death toll from the latest flooding is much higher than that of tropical storm Hagupit, which swept across the country several weeks ago and sparked a mass evacuation effort.

More than 7,000 perished when Typhoon Haiyan hit through central Philippines in November 2013, which was the most powerful typhoon ever recorded in the history of mankind.

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