Super typhoon Haiyan is estimated to have destroyed about 70 to 80% of structures in its path as it tore into the coastal provinces of Leyte and Samar on Friday, Nov. 8th 2013. Most of the damage and deaths were caused by huge waves that inundated towns, sweeping away coastal villages in scenes that officials likened to the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.

An oceanographer told the New York Times that Haiyan’s fury was the result of several factors. Its powerful winds, low pressure and intense rain worked to deliver enormous amounts of water in a short time from different directions. Low-lying areas near rivers or coastlines didn’t stand a chance.

The Philippine military on Monday confirmed 942 deaths as a result of the storm, known locally as Yolanda, with another 275 confirmed missing. However, Philippine officials expect the death toll to reach 10,000+  as rescuers make their way into the affected areas.

The storm is seen as one of the most violent ones ever recorded. It crashed into the Philippines on friday resulting in extreme damage and hampering all forms of communication in the central region of island provinces in the country.

Haiyan made landfall in northern Vietnam early monday after crossing the South China Sea, according to the Hong Kong meteorological observatory. Hundreds of thousands of people were evacuated, but there were no reports of significant damage or injuries.

Despite the big blow to rescue operations caused by the extent of devastation, agencies across the world are stepping forward to aid the wrecked Philippines.

Relief agencies have stressed the urgency of the need to get food, water, medicines and tarpaulins for the homeless survivors.

The rescue measures however have been strongly affected by the destruction brought about by the typhoon. It has displaced more than 600,000 leaving them without any supplies or resources needed for rehabilitation.

President Benigno Aquino has positioned soldiers in the affected Tacloban to prevent disorder because of looting. He has stated the possibility of imposing emergency to restore order and security to the distraught survivors.

Approximately 90 U.S. marines and sailors have been sent to the Philippines for assistance in relief efforts, as accounted by U.S. officials. President Barack Obama has assured that the United States was prepared to extend more help. U.S. support groups also initiated a multimillion-dollar relief campaign.

Canada has extended donation of around $5 million to humanitarian organizations rescuing the survivors of the calamity who have been deeply affected.

Minister of International Development Christian Paradis reported, "In addition to the support announced today, Canada has provided support through the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to provide immediate assistance to those affected by Typhoon Haiyan".

UNICEF is also sending emergency resources to the area.

Vietnam authorities have moved 883,000 people in 11 central provinces to safe zones in anticipation of the arrival of Typhoon Haiyan. It has since been downgraded to a tropical storm and meteorologists forecast torrential rain over the coming 24 hours across southern China.

Source:,,, Huffingtonpost, AP, Reuters,
Feature Image : Noel Celis / AFP / Getty Images

Other Image: AP Photo/Aaron Favila


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