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Death toll from storms nears 1,000

The death toll from two devastating storms that struck the Philippines over the past month has risen to 858, with ensuing disease outbreaks killing 89 others, the government said on Monday.

world Updated: Oct 19, 2009 09:47 IST

The death toll from two devastating storms that struck the Philippines over the past month has risen to 858, with ensuing disease outbreaks killing 89 others, the government said on Monday.

The latest National Disaster Coordinating Council toll is up from 818 on Sunday.

It said Tropical Storm Ketsana left 420 dead and 37 missing when it flooded 80 percent of Manila on September 26, a disaster the government said affected 4.35 million people.

Some areas are still flooded three weeks later and 189,000 people remain in evacuation centres, it added.

Typhoon Parma hit the northern Philippines on October 3 and lingered as a tropical storm for a week, triggering landslides that killed 438 people and leaving 51 missing mostly in mountain communities.

The government agency said Parma affected 4.16 million people, including more than 32,000 who remain at evacuation centres.

The health department said leptospirosis, a bacterial disease that can lead to kidney failure and is caused by exposure to animal urine in flood waters, later killed at least 89 people.

Even as the northern Philippines tries to recover from the twin disasters, another typhoon is threatening more devastation for the area.

Civil defence officials have put rescue teams on standby and stockpiled relief goods with Typhoon Lupit, packing winds of 175 kilometres (109 miles) an hour, forecast to start bringing bad weather to the region by Wednesday.