Typhoon Bopha kills 43 in Philippine town

2012-12-04 15:16
This Earth Observatory image shows Typhoon Bopha moving toward the Philippines. (Jesse Allen, AP/Nasa)

This Earth Observatory image shows Typhoon Bopha moving toward the Philippines. (Jesse Allen, AP/Nasa)

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Manila - Typhoon Bopha killed 43 people in one hard-hit Philippine town Tuesday, local television station ABS-CBN reported from the scene.

"I've counted 43 bodies on the floor," reporter Vina Araneta told the station by telephone from a government building in New Bataan town on the southern island of Mindanao.

Officials, who could not immediately confirm the television report, earlier said eight other people were killed by the cyclone elsewhere in Mindanao.

The reporter said the town mayor, Lorenzo Balbin, told her many of the dead had come from a nearby village where flash floods swept away a Philippine Army patrol base.

Balbin was not answering his mobile phone when contacted by AFP.

Truck washed away

Lieutenant-Colonel Lyndon Paniza, the military spokesperson for the southern region, said one soldier had drowned in New Bataan but that the military authorities there did not know how many residents were killed by the typhoon.

"There was a patrol base there that was hit. It's a mountainous area," Paniza said.

Arturo Uy, the governor of Compostela Valley province, which includes New Bataan, said local officials had told him earlier in the day that there were 34 people dead there.

"It's possible they have found more bodies," Uy told ABS-CBN by telephone.

Uy said earlier that an army truck in New Bataan had been washed away with soldiers and civilians on board.

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