Typhoon Kammuri lashes PhilippinesDecember 4 2019 by Yvonne Lau
Typhoon Kammuri, locally known as Tisoy, which made landfall in the Philippines yesterday, has prompted a 12-hour shutdown of the Ninoy Aquino international airport and cancellation of 100 flights on December 3.
The typhoon first hit Luzon’s south-eastern parts on December 2, with maximum sustained winds of 215 km/hour. Manila is now bracing for the storm to hit on December 3; the capital city will face heavy rainfall and strong winds. Classes have also been suspended in metro Manila; it is the 20th typhoon to lash the country this year.
To date, there is a death toll of one, displaced people numbering in the thousands and reports of downed power lines. Mandatory evacuations have been issued for half a million people; with around 200,000 already evacuated.
The storm comes as the country hosts the 2019 South-East Asian Games, with the biennial disrupted and several events rescheduled, such as the postponement of windsurfing competitions.
As of December 3, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGAS) noted a weakening of the storm, but forecasts heavy rainfall, storm surges and risk of flooding and landslides.
The country recently issued two catastrophe-linked bonds from the World Bank’s International Bank for Reconstruction and Development – which means financial protection against natural catastrophe losses up to US$225 million.
Both public and private sectors have recognised the need for financial resilience and protection in a nation highly vulnerable to disasters – just in October, the country was rocked by three major earthquakes, with the strongest one registering a 6.6 magnitude. Natural catastrophes have cost the nation US$7 billion since 2011.
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