09/19/2014, 00.00
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Over 50 thousand flee flooding in Manila, schools and offices closed

The heavy rains caused by tropical storm Fung-Wong have paralyzed the capital. 268 mm of rain, 76% of the monthly average fell in a few hours. More rain predicted. 21 domestic flights canceled, some international routes diverted. So far, no deaths or injuries.

Manila (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Heavy rains brought by the tail end of tropical storm Fung-Wong have paralyzed the capital Manila, forcing tens of thousands of people to flee their flooded homes and blocking traffic.

This morning, many areas of the Philippine capital are under water, particularly in the populous eastern districts after a large river burst its baks; other parts of the metropolis and the region to the north have also reported widespread flooding. At the moment, however, there are no reports of deaths or injuries.

In spite of a moderate winds, with a maximum of 65 km / h, the tropical storm Fung-Wong has generated heavy rain, pouring more than 268 mm of rain over night as confirmed by the state weather forecaster.

This means that a volume of water equal to 76% of the monthly average fell in just one night; according to forecasts more rain is coming, of high intensity, especially in the mountainous areas of the northeast.

The floods have forced at least 50 thousand people to abandon their homes in the capital and surrounding areas. The government has closed schools and sent civil servants not involved in disaster relief and emergency management home; the financial markets are also closed.

21 domestic flights at the Manila airport have been canceled, six international routes have been diverted to other airports in the country due to bad weather. Meanwhile, there is mounting discontent among the population that intense weather phenomena also result in emergencies: "I am infuriated - Ghelynne del Rosario, a Manila lawyer, tells AFP - every time there is heavy rain it is always the same story. "

An average of 20 typhoons hit the Philippines every year resulting in hundreds of deaths and worsening the already precarious conditions of the country's millions of poor.  In November last year, the super-typhoon Haian (Yolanda in the Philippines),), the strongest ever to hit the archipelago, left behind at least 7,300 dead or missing. Almost 11 million inhabitants suffered damage, scattered among 574 municipalities and cities.


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