Half of Manila Underwater

Tens of thousands evacuated as rain covers Philippine capital
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 7, 2012 6:31 AM CDT
Half of Manila Underwater
A man looks at the deep floodwaters outside his house in suburban Quezon City, north of Manila, Philippines on Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2012.   (Aaron Favila)

Relentless rains submerged half of the sprawling Philippine capital, triggered a landslide that killed eight people, and sent emergency crews scrambling today to rescue and evacuate tens of thousands of residents. The deluge, the worst since 2009 when hundreds died in rampaging flash floods, was set off by the seasonal monsoon that overflowed major dams and rivers in Manila and surrounding provinces. In Manila's suburban Quezon City, a landslide hit a row of shanties along a road, burying eight people, according to witnesses. The victims included four children.

"It's like a water world," said the head of the government's disaster response agency. He said the rains flooded 50% of metropolitan Manila last night, and about 30% remained under waist- or neck-deep waters today. Manila's weather bureau said a separate tropical storm off eastern China had intensified monsoon rains in the Philippines, which were forecast to last until Thursday. The capital and other parts of the country already were saturated from last week's Typhoon Saola, which was responsible for at least 53 deaths. (More Manila stories.)

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