Manila, Dec 24: The death toll from Tropical Storm Tembin in southern Philippines has risen to at least 200 people with hundreds more missing, according to officials and aid agencies.
Rescue efforts are under way after the storm lashed the country’s second largest island, Mindanao on Friday, triggering mudslides and flash floods.
Aid workers fear the number of casualties will further increase as forecasters predict more heavy rains.
“We’re really on our toes right now,” Richard Gordon, chairman of the Philippines Red Cross told Al Jazeera on Saturday.
“We’re trying to figure out how to give help to so many people that are really in danger.”
Most of the deaths caused by Tembin, known locally as Vinta, were reported in the provinces of Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur, as well as on the Zamboanga peninsula.
At least 62 people were killed in the hardest-hit province, Lanao del Norte, where floodwaters swept away an entire village on Friday, according to media reports.
The flash floods that hit the remote farming village of Dalama in the Tubod region washed away more than 100 houses, killing at least 18 people, the news website Rappler said.
At least 27 people were still reported missing.
“The rains caused the Cabuyo River to overflow. The flood came with big rocks and uprooted trees. It wiped out a community composed of 103 houses,” Vicmar Palomar, a local disaster management official, told the news website.
A state of emergency has been declared in Lanao del Norte, as well as Lanao del Sur, the Philippine Daily Inquirer said.