Disaster: Evacuation As New Storm Is On Way

(Typhoon Haiyan)

(Typhoon Haiyan)

Rescuers are struggling to get desperately needed aid to areas of the Philippines devastated by Typhoon Haiyan – as a new storm approaches.

Aid workers are being held back by blocked roads and damaged airports as they try to deliver tents, food and medicines to the worst affected areas.

Troops have been sent to the city of Tacloban to restore law and order after reports of looting, with Philippines President Benigno Aquino declaring a state of calamity and considering whether martial law is necessary.

Looters have reportedly broken into supermarkets, while a Red Cross aid convoy was raided. Consumer goods such as televisions and washing machines have also been stolen.

At least 10,000 people are thought to have been killed by the typhoon, officials believe.

Corpses hung from trees in the city and were scattered in the streets. Many were buried in flattened buildings.

One UN official said he was told there had been a three-metre (10ft) water surge through the city.

A further 300 are confirmed dead with 2,000 missing on the neighbouring island of Samar.

Water has been cut off in many areas, making the relief effort more difficult.

Threatening to further hamper relief efforts is a new storm approaching the southern and central Philippines.

Government weather forecasters said the tropical depression could bring fresh floods to typhoon-affected areas.

The depression is expected to hit land on the southern island of Mindanao late Tuesday and then move across the central islands of Bohol, Cebu, Negros and Panay, which all suffered typhoon damage, forecaster Connie Dadivas said.

It could bring “moderate to heavy” rains, or about five to 15 millimetres (0.2 to 0.6 inches) per hour, he said.

Sky’s Chief Correspondent Stuart Ramsay, in Manila, said: “The relief operation is only just getting going, it’s fairly piecemeal at the moment.

“They really don’t have the volume of aircraft they need to either get aircraft in or people out in sufficient quantities to try and control what has become, day-by-day, a more difficult situation.”

At least six people have also been killed in Vietnam after the typhoon made landfall near the Chinese border.

Some 600,000 people were evacuated from at-risk areas in the north of the country before Haiyan – downgraded to a weaker Category One storm – battered the coast with 98mph (157kmph) winds.

All schools in the capital Hanoi were closed on Monday, and extra police were dispatched to redirect traffic in flood-prone areas.

In the Philippines millions of people are said to have been directly affected by the typhoon’s path and the death toll is expected to rise further as rescuers reach cut-off areas.

“This area has been totally ravaged”, said Sebastien Sujobert, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Tacloban.

“Many lives were lost, a huge number of people are missing, and basic services such as drinking water and electricity have been cut off.”

Haiyan hit the east coast of the Philippines on Friday and smashed through its central islands, with winds of 147mph (235 kmph) and a storm surge of 20ft (six metres).

Video from Eastern Samar province’s Guiuan township – the first area where the typhoon made landfall – also showed a trail of devastation. Many houses were flattened and roads were strewn with debris and uprooted trees. 

Witnesses reported seeing looting and violence with President Aquino admitting it was a major concern.

Military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Ramon Zagala told AFP news agency that 100 soldiers had been sent to help police restore law and order in Tacloban.

The United Nations said it was sending supplies but access to the worst hit areas was a challenge.

US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel has directed the military’s Pacific Command to deploy ships and aircraft to support search-and-rescue operations and airlift emergency supplies.

The European Commission has released €3m (£2.5m) in emergency funds, while the UK is providing £6m in aid and Prime Minister David Cameron has telephoned President Aquino to offer his support.

SKY News will run a special detailed news tonight by 7:00pm.

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