Death toll from Philippine typhoon passes 280

3:49 PM, Dec 5, 2012   |    comments
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NEW BATAAN, Philippines - A powerful typhoon has killed more than 280 people in the southern Philippines.

Officials fear more bodies may be found as rescuers reach hard-hit areas that were isolated by landslides, floods and downed communications.

In one town, a flash flood swamped two emergency shelters and a military camp, killing 78 villagers and soldiers. About 80 people survived the deluge in New Bataan town with injuries, but government estimates put the number of missing anywhere from 50 and to more than 300.

On a roadside, dozens of mud-stained bodies were laid side-by-side, covered by cloth and banana leaves and surrounded by villagers. A man sprayed insecticide on the remains to keep away swarms of flies as stunned parents searched for missing children.

The stormy weather has given way to sunshine today, prompting residents to lay their soaked clothes, books and other belongings out on roadsides to dry.

The Associated Press

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