33 Philippine miners dead in typhoon-triggered landslides

Manila, Sep 17 : At least 33 miners were confirmed dead and 29 others missing in the mining town of Itogon in the northern Philippine Benguet province due to typhoon-triggered landslides, authorities said on Sunday.

Itogon Mayor Victorio Palangdan said in local radio interviews that landslides had blocked roads, making relief rescue efforts difficult, Xinhua reported.

In Ucab village of Itogon, he said, two bunkhouses with an estimated 100 people living inside were buried by mud and rubble triggered by Typhoon Mangkhut on Saturday.

“I can’t begin to accept this, but it looks like the casualties here are going to go up to at least 100,” Palangdan said.

Most of Itogon residents work as miners in small scale mining industry while the rest are in farming. Most mine workers built boot camps around the mining area with their families.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines have sent troops to the disaster area to help in the rescue and retrieval efforts. But rescuers said the buried bunkhouses were built at a steep angle, making it difficult to implement rescue.

Meanwhile, the regional police of Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) said at least 49 people have so far died in the region that bore the brunt of the typhoon. Fourteen others are missing, the police said. Thirty-two people were also injured, the police added.

The Cordillera Administrative Region, which consists seven provinces, is the only land-locked region of the Philippines. The regional centre is Baguio City, officially known as the Summer Capital of the Philippines.
(IANS)

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