A devastating storm left at least 375 people dead in the Philippines when it struck the country on Thursday.
Super typhoon Rai left at least 500 people injured and nearly 60 unaccounted for, according to police. Approximately 400,000 people were forced to run when the storm struck the southeast islands on which they resided.
Rai had winds of 120 mph and left in its wake what rescue crews described as “complete carnage” behind.
“There are some areas that look like it has been bombed worse than World War Two,” the Chair of the Philippines Red Cross, Richard Gordon, said. “Homes, hospitals, school and community buildings have been ripped to shreds.”
“Many areas have no power, no communications, very little water,” he added. Many areas have been cut off from communication making it difficult to get an accurate count of the injured and dead.
Concerns about landslides and flooding that could cause more loss of life is widespread and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has started an emergency plea in the hopes of getting $22 million to fund relief efforts that will last long-term.
“The fields and boats of our farmers and fisherfolk have been decimated,” Arlene Bag-ao, the governor of the Dinagat Islands, said.
“We have lost our homes. Walls and roofs were torn and blown off,” she said. “We have a dwindling supply of food and water. Electricity and telecommunications are down. This is why we urgently and humbly ask for everyone’s help.”
It is the most powerful storm to hit the Philippines in 2021 and comes late in the typhoon season as the majority of storms occur between July and October, there are about 20 storms that strike the country per year.