Super Typhoon Yolanda Rips Into the Philippines, Four Confirmed Dead

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Update 12:19 p.m. EST: The first death toll figures of super typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan are in, and there have been four confirmed deaths, the Sydney Morning Herald reports. Yes, that's appears to be very low considering how strong and wide the storm is. But there's one major caveat — the storm has knocked out communications and electricity for much of the Philippines, meaning there's no way to tell yet exactly how many people may dead, missing, hurt. Nor will we know the full extent of the damage until Saturday morning. (There's a 13-hour time difference between the U.S.'s East Coast and the Philippines.) 

"The humanitarian impact of Haiyan threatens to be colossal," Patrick Fuller, a spokesman for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, told Reuters. Officials in the Philippines are expecting the death toll to rise considerably.

Original Post: A massive storm known as Super Typhoon Haiyan finally hit the eastern Philippines on Friday, with winds of more than 200 miles per hour, causing flooding and evacuations in certain parts of the country. The storm, known locally as Yolanda, is the most powerful typhoon in recorded history, and those monitoring it are expecting a lot of damage. One meteorologist told USA Today that in the Philippines, "there aren't too many buildings constructed that can withstand that kind of wind."

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Approximately 10 million people are in the path of a direct hit from the storm. And because it's 2013, pictures are already beginning to surface online, though luckily, things don't look too harsh just yet.


This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.