Typhoon Haiyan - Live Blogs - Al Jazeera English

Typhoon Haiyan

Latest updates on the powerful storm that caused death and destruction in the Philippines.

  • Vietnam's weather bureau said Haiyan "is quickly moving north and northwest, travelling at a speed of up to 35 kilometers per hour."
    The typhoon is expected to hit Vietnam as category 1 storm.

  • Philippines president, Benigno S. Aquino III, (second left), visited the city of Tacloban in the island province of Leyte. The city was hit the hardest by the super typhoon. [EPA]
    by Hamza.Mohamed

  • US sending search-and-rescue ships and transport aircraft following request for assistance from Manila.
  • UNICEF - The UN children's fund -  said a cargo plane carrying 60 tonnes of aid including shelters and medicine would arrive in the Philippines  on Tuesday, to be followed by deliveries of water purification and sanitation  equipment.
  • Germany said rescue team from the country was already in the Philippines and 23 tonnes of aid was being flown in.

  • Vietnamese coastguard calls on fishermen to move their boats to safety before typhoon Haiyan arrives. [EPA] 
    by Hamza.Mohamed

  • Cheers broke out in the typhoon-devastated airport of Tacloban city in the Philippines when 21-year old Emily Ortega gave birth to a girl.

    It was a rare piece of good news for the city where officials fear 10,000 were killed, and where tens of thousands of residents saw their homes flattened by ferocious winds.

    The birth of Bea Joy Sagales on Monday was near miraculous, officials said. Her mother was in a shelter when the storm flooded the city. She clung to a post to survive, then reached the safety of the airport where a military doctor assisted the birth. [AP]
  • The United States, Australia and the United Nations are mobilising emergency aid to the Philippines as the scale of the devastation unleashed by the super typhoon emerges.

    The Pentagon is sending military personnel and equipment to assist with the relief effort.
    "The United States is already providing significant humanitarian assistance, and we stand ready to further assist the government's relief and recovery efforts," President Barack Obama said in a statement.

    The Australian government pledged $9.38m, with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop describing the unfolding tragedy as "absolutely devastating" and on a "massive scale".
    A team of Australian medics will leave on Wednesday to join disaster experts already on the ground, the government said. 

    UN leader Ban Ki-moon promised humanitarian agencies would "respond rapidly to help people in need". [AFP]
  • Aid efforts for the Philippines following typhoon destruction:

    A worker loads World Food Programme relief goods to be sent to victims [Reuters]
    by AJE Staff
    Members of the Belgian First Aid and Support Team get ready ahead of emergency aid mission [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff
    US Marines board an aircraft at the Futenma airbase on the southern Japanese island of Okinawa to go to the Philippines [Reuters] 
    by AJE Staff

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  • UN and international aid groups tweet about Philippines recovery:

  • Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas reports from Manila that Secretary to the Cabinet Jose Rene Almendras has held a press conference from the Presidential Palace, and has said that Tacloban is no longer so isolated as the San Juanico bridge (a major gateway to Leyte) has been cleared and is now passable.  

    He said the clearing was done Sunday afternoon, so relief goods and other emergency needs can now access this route as well.

    Almendras also said that the issue is not a lack of enough supplies or relief goods for survivors, but that it has been incredibly difficult to distribute it because of the extent of the devastation. It has not been easy coordinating with local officials, who are mostly victims themselves, and who have more knowledge about the localities than the national government, making their help vital.

    There are also reports of survivors stealing from the dead. Secretary Almendras said that the looting has gone too far, and that it is not just about survival. He illustrated as an example that someone allegedly stole a McDonald's sign, asking "What the heck would he need that for?"
  • Al Jazeera's Wayne Hay reports from Tacloban on the situation there:

    Tacloban desperate following typhoon devastation
    by Al Jazeera English via YouTube on 9:09 AM

  • Tropical storm Haiyan, which has downgraded from its severity as a typhoon, made landfall in northern Vietnam earlier today. 

    The Vietnamese national weather forecast agency said Haiyan made landfall in the northern province of Quang Ninh at 5:00 local time, and was moving toward southern China, where it is expected to weaken to a low depression later Monday. 

    No casualties or major damage have been reported. [AP]

    A man watches a boat sink in northern Vietnam on Monday [AP] 
    by AJE Staff

  • Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas reports on aid efforts in the Philippines:

    Philippines struggles for recovery following typhoon
    by Al Jazeera English via YouTube on 9:24 AM

  • The UN Secretary-General's office released a statement on aid efforts in the Philippines:

    The Secretary-General notes that the United Nations and humanitarian partners, in close coordination with local and national authorities, have quickly ramped up critical relief operations to help families in desperate need. While many communities are very difficult to reach, with roads, airports and bridges destroyed or blocked with debris, agencies have begun airlifting food, health, shelter, medical and other life-saving supplies and have deployed specialist teams and vital logistics support.

  • Hundreds of Philippine soldiers and police poured into a city devastated by Super Typhoon Haiyan on Monday to try to contain looting that threatens an emergency relief effort.

    Mobs are breaking into supermarkets and even raiding a Red Cross aid convoy. Survivors also reported gangs stealing consumer goods including televisions and washing machines from small businesses.

    President Benigno Aquino said on Sunday while visiting Tacloban that looting was a major concern, after only 20 officers out of the city's 390-strong police force turned up for work.

    "The local police were victims themselves," Philippine National Police spokesman, Senior Superintendent Reuben Sindac, told ABS-CBN television on Monday. "Some of them also have families that are affected. We don't even know how many [police] casualties [there] are."

    Military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Ramon Zagala said that troops could not mobilise fully because of the devastation. "Although we have many troops in the area, they too are affected," he said. [AFP]

  • A resident waves a white flag as a rescue helicopter lands delivering relief foods near Guiuan, Eastern Samar [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff

  • Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas is reporting from Manila that Tacloban has been put under a state of emergency to try to curb the looting problem and stabilise peace and order. A curfew will be imposed from 2200 at night to 600, local time.
  • Photos of Hernani town, in the Philippine Eastern Samar province:

    Survivor framed by a tattered Philippines national flag among debris [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff
    Survivors attempt to rebuild destroyed houses for shelter [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff
    The most pressing issue has been accessing devastated areas, as roads and other access ways via land and sea are completely destroyed [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff

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  • Photos of tropical storm Haiyan's effects on northern Vietnam, in the north-eastern coastal province of Quang Ninhni:

    Fishermen were told to leave their boats [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff
    The tropical storm caused some crashing waves, but none as serious as those in the Philippines which caused massive flooding [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff
    Coastal areas experienced some flooding, and thousands of trees were uprooted [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff

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  • Streets were flooded on the southern Chinese island province of Hainan [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff

    Tropical Storm Haiyan's huge waves and heavy wind tore a ship from its moorings in southern China and prevented rescue of the crew, official media have reported.

    The cargo ship moored on Hainan island was driven out to sea as the typhoon swept through on Sunday. 

    Attempts to rescue the crew by ship, speed boat and helicopter were forced back, Xinhua News Agency said.

    Two bodies were found on Monday and five other crew members are missing, it said.

    At least six people have died and hundreds of homes damaged after the weakened storm made its way to China. [AP]

    Many trees were uprooted in Hainan from the storm on Monday [AFP] 
    by AJE Staff

  • The Philippine military has confirmed 942 people have died in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan.

    Military spokesman Lt. Jim Alagao also said on Monday that 275 others were confirmed missing from the storm.

    The death toll is expected to rise considerably, as two provincial officials predicted on Sunday that it could reach 10,000 or more. [AP]
  • A US Marine general said he saw bodies everywhere during a helicopter flight over the central Philippines.

    Speaking after a two-hour flight with Filipino forces on Monday, US Marine Brig. Gen. Paul Kennedy said every building and house he saw was destroyed or severely damaged.

    "We saw bodies everywhere," he said. Some were floating in the water, others in a schoolyard.

    He said trees were uprooted for miles around, roads were impassable and power lines were down.

    "I don't know how else you can describe total devastation," he added. [AP]
  • A man spray paints "HELP SOS - WE NEED FOOD" on Tacloban's seaport [AP]

    by AJE Staff

  • Ormoc, the second-largest city in the Philippines' Leyte Province has been levelled by Typhoon Haiyan, which swept through the island nation this weekend and has now made landfall in Vietnam. The storm, whose winds gusted to as fast as 300 kilometres per hour, tore roofs from homes, destroyed shelters and killed at least 21 people.

    "We did not expect that the devastation would be this overwhelming," Edward Codilla, mayor of Ormoc City, said in an interview with Al Jazeera.

    The city of about 200,000 is 120km south of Tacloban City, the area hit worst by the storm.

    Ormoc, the second-largest city in the province of Leyte with a population of 200,000, was hit badly by Typhoon Haiyan.  / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Haiyan barreled through Ormoc at least four hours earlier than forecasted. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    "We did not expect that the devastation would be this overwhelming," said Edward Codilla, the mayor of Ormoc City. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Bienvenido Matiga, the head of Ormoc's disaster response team, reported at least 21 fatalities, 106 injured, and 8,000 evacuees. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    As of Monday, phone communication has been partially restored, but electricity remains off. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    As many as 10,000 people may have died in the storm overall, officials estimated. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    About 90 percent of the city's roofs were torn off by the typhoon. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera 
    by Ismaeel Naar
    The national government is unable to deliver immediate help to the typhoon's victims. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Haiyan's winds gusted as fast as 300 kilometres per hour. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Many of those who have survived are now struggling to find food, water and medicine. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Before the typhoon made its first landfall in the Philippines, churches called on the faithfuls to say the "Oratio Imperata", a prayer for protection during major catastrophes. / Ted Regencia/Al Jazeera 
    by Ismaeel Naar

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  • The Philippines climate change commissioner gave a passionate, emotional speech at a major international climate change conference in Warsaw on Monday.

    Yep Sano was speaking at the start of the 19th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP19, which is taking place in the Polish capital.

    Choking back tears as he addressed delegates from nearly 200 countries, Sano described the devastation left in the wake of typhoon Haiyan. 

    "We remain uncertain as to the full extent of the damage and devastation as information trickles in agonisingly slow," he said. "The initial assessment showed that Haiyan left a wake of massive destruction that is unprecedented, unthinkable and horrific."

  • United Nations Coordinator of humanitarian affairs (UNOCHA), John Ging, addressed a news conference on Typhoon Haiyan and has said that the UN estimates 600,000 people have been displaced since the aftermath in the philippines.

    He also added that Valerie Amos, UN's aid chief, is making her way to the Philippines to coordinate relief efforts.

    The UNOCHA said they will be primarily "focusing on the requirements for food, shelter and medical support."

    More details soon.

  • Aerial view of Guiuan show the extent of the destruction cause.

    The true scale of Super Typhoon Haiyan can be seen from the air. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    The town of Guiuan is situated on a spit of land in the southeast of Samar Island. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    The town was severely damaged by the super typhoon, and aid may take several days to reach the survivors. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Guiuan is to the east of Tacloban and saw some of the worst conditions of the storm. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    The city was devastated by winds of approximately 300 kph, and a storm surge of over 5 metres. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    Although the residents were advised to evacuate, a number of people stayed to protect their homes. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    With their homes destroyed, survivors assemble makeshift tents whilst they wait for help on Victory Island, near Guiuan. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar
    It will take many more days before aid finally starts to trickle through to all those who are in desperate need of help. /AFP PHOTO / TED ALJIBE
    by Ismaeel Naar

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  • US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered the aircraft carrier USS George Washington and other American ships to head to the typhoon-stricken Philippines, the Pentagon said on Monday.

    The carrier, which has 5,000 sailors and more than 80 aircraft aboard, is currently in Hong Kong for a port visit.

    The crew is being recalled early from shore leave and the ship is expected to be underway later this evening, the Pentagon said in a statement.

  • The United Nations warned on Monday of a quickly mounting death toll from the super typhoon in the Philippines, with 10,000 people feared killed in the worst-hit city of Tacloban alone.

    One top humanitarian official said the UN was "expecting the worst" on the final body count, and also cited the desperate need for clean drinking water and food for survivors of the disaster.

    John Ging, UN humanitarian operations director, said 660,000 people had fled their homes because of Typhoon Haiyan and that the United Nations will appeal for significant international aid for victims on Tuesday.

    "The scale of devastation is massive and therefore it will require the mobilization of a massive response," Ging said, praising the Philippines government response to the disaster as "very impressive" so far.

    UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos, who is heading for the Philippines, said in a statement that "local officials estimate that some 10,000 people were killed in one city alone".

    Her spokeswoman confirmed that she was referring to Tacloban, which was devastated by the storm.

    "Many places are strewn with dead bodies," Ging told a news conference at UN headquarters, confirming estimates that "over 10,000 people perished".

    Amos was expected in Manila to run a joint relief operation by private groups and the UN, which has already released $25 million from its emergency fund for aid.

    Tuesday's "flash appeal" for cash, was likely to be seeking hundreds of millions of dollars, UN officials said.

  • The United States has sent an aircraft carrier to the Philippines to provide assistance in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan which leveled part of the country with more than 10,000 feared dead.

    The aircraft carrier, which carries 5,000 sailors and more than 80 aircraft, was in Hong Kong for a port visit and is expected to reach the Philippines in about two days.

    The US said Monday that it is fully committed to helping the Philippines recover from one of the most powerful typhoons on record, and is providing $20 million in immediate aid.

    [The Associated Press]

  • A view of devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
    [Ecological Internet / @ecolinternet] 

  • Aid in short supply in Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan
    by Al Jazeera English via YouTube on 2:29 AM

    Aid is in short supply in the Philippines after Super Typhoon Haiyan.

    Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas reports from Manila. 
  • Typhoon Haiyan which devastated the Philippines has killed eight people in southern China and inflicted hundreds of millions of dollars in damage to farming and fishing industries, AFP reported citing China's state media.

    The super typhoon, which slammed into the Philippines and declared as one of the strongest storms ever to make landfall, had fortuitously already weakened to tropical storm by the time it crossed into southern China on Monday.

    But it still had gusts up to 100km per hour and dropped up to 38cm of rain over some parts of Guangxi province.

    The hardest hit area was the southern Chinese island of Hainan, where the approaching storm wrenched a cargo ship from its anchored location, drove it out to sea and prevented rescue attempts by speed boat and helicopter.

    Three bodies were recovered and four crew members remained missing, China National Radio said.

    By Tuesday, four other people in Hainan were confirmed dead, including two people hit by falling objects, according to China National Radio, which said the storm caused up to $700 million in damage to agricultural, forestry, poultry and fishing industries there.


  • The United Nations will on Tuesday launch an urgent aid appeal expected to seek hundreds of millions of dollars to help the Philippines recover from the ravages of Typhoon Haiyan.

    UN humanitarian chief Valerie Amos was headed for the Philippines to lead a "flash appeal" for cash, officials said, saying the scale of devastation was so far-reaching that a major emergency effort is needed.

    The announcement came as the Pentagon said it had ordered an aircraft carrier, other ships and scores of aircraft that had been on a stop in Hong Kong to head to the stricken archipelago.

    Ahead of the emergency appeal, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the aid already pledged but said contributions "must expand urgently in the days ahead," given the sheer damage wrought by Haiyan.

    Britain is sending a ship and a transporter plane to assist with the relief effort following the typhoon, which may have killed more than 10,000 people in what is feared to be the worst natural disaster ever to hit the Philippines.

    "The scale of devastation is massive and therefore it will require the mobilisation of a massive response," John Ging, the UN's humanitarian operations director said, stressing the death toll was expected to rise.

    "Many places are strewn with dead bodies," Ging told a news conference at the UN headquarters in New York.

  • Al Jazeera's correspondent reporting from Manila:

    Tacloban, November 12, 2013 [AFP]  
    by Yermi Brenner

  • [REUTERS/Nino Jesus Orbeta]
    by Yermi Brenner

  • When the storm came, Imelda Amodia, principal of the local high school, was still coordinating the evacuation of 1,000 people at the school buildings.

    "It was so sudden," Amodia told Al Jazeera. "We could not really do anything at that point, except to hide in the bathroom and [say] the rosary [prayers] for hours."

    Al Jazeera's Ted Regencia reporting from Leyte provinceFollow Ted's updates on Twitter: @TedRegencia

  • The United Nation's World Food Programme published this video to raise donations for typhoon Haiyan survivors.
    by World Food Programme via YouTube on 5:46 PM yesterday

  • Al Jazeera's correspondent reporting from Manila:

  • Al Jazeera's Wayne Hay reporting from Tacloban City.

  • In Tacloban City, one of the area worst hit by the typhoon, thousands have died.

    A dead body is taken away to a morgue in Tacloban, on the eastern island of Leyte on November 12, 2013 [AFP/Philippe Lopez]
    by Yermi Brenner
    Residents carry a container of drinking water in Tacloban [Reuters/Romeo Ranoco] 
    by Yermi Brenner
    Dead bodies are unloaded at a makeshift morgue in Tacloban [AFP/Philippe Lopez]
    by Yermi Brenner
    Dead bodies are lined up at a makeshift morgue in Tacloban [AFP/Philippe Lopez] 
    by Yermi Brenner

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  • The European Commission announced it was upping to 13 million euros ($17 million) reconstruction aid for the Philippines, as the UN appealed for $300 million to help victims of super typhoon Haiyan.

    European Union Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs announced an additional 10 million euros in aid as the death toll mounted, with Haiyan having destroyed entire coastal communities, possibly claiming 10,000 lives, according to the United Nations.

    Piebalgs said that the new money would go on water and sanitation rehabilitation, power grid repairs, basic health, livelihood support, shelter and repair of infrastructure.

    Funding needs to go "beyond humanitarian assistance" and cover immediate "rehabilitation and reconstruction," Piebalgs said in a statement as he wrapped up a visit to Manila.

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