© 2023 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
WPKT · WRLI-FM · WEDW-FM · Public Files Contact
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Thousands In The Philippines Evacuated Ahead Of Christmas Typhoon


A typhoon hit the Philippines on Christmas Eve, killing more than a dozen people and stranding thousands trying to get home for the holidays.


The government evacuated more than 58,000 people from low-lying areas before the typhoon made landfall. That likely saved many lives from the storm surge, says Matthew McGarry with Catholic Relief Services in the Philippines.

MATTHEW MCGARRY: The government does a much better job than it did six years ago. They really learned the lessons of Haiyan, and it's much more proactive in relocating families.

SHAPIRO: He's talking about Typhoon Haiyan, which left a trail of devastation along a similar path in 2013. With Haiyan, at least six thousand people died, and McGarry says his organization is still working to house and help the victims of that storm.

CHANG: Even though the death toll is much smaller this time, McGarry says these storms are so frequent, communities don't get a chance to recover.

MCGARRY: It is the poorest and most vulnerable families who are on the coastline, whose homes are made out of sheets and taped together with cardboard or plastic that get easily blown away even in typhoon Category 1 storms.

CHANG: And Matthew McGarry says even in comparatively smaller storms, the losses can be huge.

MCGARRY: Quite a bit of their possessions may get washed away. Their livestock may be killed. Their crops may be inundated with floodwaters. And so it will be tens of thousands of families that will require some sort of assistance or recovery to get back on their feet.

SHAPIRO: Water and power is still out for dozens of cities and towns. Restoring services could take weeks. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.