Death toll from Philippine landslides, floods rises to 14

The death toll from landslides and floods triggered by torrential rain in the southern Philippines in the past week has risen to 14, official tallies showed Saturday.

Rain has pounded parts of Mindanao, the country’s second-largest island, on and off for weeks and forced tens of thousands of people into emergency shelters.

At least 10 people died in recent days in the mountainous gold mining province of Davao de Oro as it endured relentless downpours.

“I haven’t experienced that kind of heavy and continuous rain before,” provincial information officer Fe Maestre told AFP.

Of the 10 deaths in Davao de Oro, three were recorded in New Bataan municipality and another four people were killed in landslides in Maragusan and Monkayo municipalities, disaster officials told AFP.

Another three people drowned in separate incidents in Pantukan and Maco municipalities in Davao de Oro.

In the neighbouring province of Davao del Norte, a landslide buried four people inside a house in Kapalong municipality, rescue officer Jaiasent Cabactulan told AFP.

Widespread flooding in the adjacent province of Agusan del Sur has inundated villages and crops.

Provincial disaster agency spokesman Alexis Cabardo told local radio on Saturday it could take five or six days for the floodwaters to recede as more flows down from Davao de Oro.

“We still have to be alert,” he said.

The Philippines is ranked among the most vulnerable nations to the impacts of climate change.

Because a warmer atmosphere holds more water, climate change increases the risk and intensity of flooding from extreme rainfall.

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