Typhoon Vamco hits northern Philippines hard

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The Typhoon Vamco It hit the center of the island of Luzon in the northern Philippines, including Manila, where rivers and dams are at risk of overflowing, hit hard early Thursday.

Vamco, which made landfall Wednesday night on the east coast of Luzon in the province of Quezon, swept the central area of ​​the island with sustained winds of 155 kilometers per hour and gusts of up to 255 km / h and copious rains, according to the latest bulletin from Pagasa, the national meteorological agency.

Vamco is expected to leave Philippine territory in the next few hours along the Zambales coast, although it will remain in the area of ​​responsibility of Philippines until Friday and will leave heavy rains in the provinces of central Luzon, where alert level 3 (out of 5) remains.

Rains and floods

The Philippine capital woke up with heavy rains and persistent and flooding in the slums, a situation that some Filipino media compares to Ketsana in 2009, the most devastating typhoon to hit Manila and which killed 464 people in the entire country.

In the eastern end of the city, hundreds of families have been evacuated because the Marikina River has reached 21.8 meters, surpassing the mark that Ketsana left in 2009, when they occurred severe flooding in the district of Marikina with 78 deaths due to the rise in the water level.

The Angat, Caliraya, La Mesa and Ipo dams – which supply water to the Manila metropolitan area and its surroundings – have already begun to relieve and could overflow, as Pagasa has alerted, so the evacuation of nearby communities has been recommended.

Accumulated damage

Vamco is the fifth cyclone that hits the country in less than a month, after fifty victims and millionaire damages caused by the last storms.

The Bicol and Calabarzon regions, south of Luzon, have also been hit by Vamco while still recovering from the strong impact of Typhoon Goni -that left 25 dead and 6 missing– and typhoon Molave ​​(22 dead and four missing), with accumulated losses in agriculture and infrastructure of about 220 million dollars.

Cyclone season

In recent weeks the Philippines has also suffered tropical storm severe Atsani, which hit the extreme north of the country, and Tropical Storm Etau, which swept through the same areas of Goni and Molave, although with less force.

After you have received 21 cyclones so far this year, Pagasa announced today that the Philippines could still suffer the passage of four other tropical storms before the end of 2020, a year especially vulnerable to these phenomena due to the impact of the phenomenon known as La Niña.

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