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Three dead as storm hits central Philippines

world Updated: Apr 01, 2012 08:22 IST

AFP
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Three people drowned and one other person was missing in the central Philippines after a storm swept though the region bringing heavy rain and rough seas, civil defence officials said on Thursday.

A fisherman died off Catanduanes island while a woman and her six-year-old son drowned while trying to cross a swollen river near the central town of Sipocot said Jay Ramos, a civil defence official of the Bicol region.

All three died on Monday, he said.

"We've had continuous rains here for the past three days," Ramos told AFP by telephone.

Another fisherman went missing off the central town of Tolosa on Tuesday, the government's National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said in Manila.

The council reported scattered flooding across the central islands, with about 200 people forced to leave their homes for higher ground.

The storm has since crossed over into the South China Sea, the state weather service said.

The Philippine islands are struck by about 20 storms and typhoons every year, bringing death and misery to millions.

Tropical storm Washi wrought flash floods in two southern cities in December last year, killing more than 1,200 people.