Christmas storm Ursula exits PH after battering southwestern Luzon, Visayas


Posted at Dec 28 2019 10:35 AM

MANILA - Christmas typhoon Ursula (Phanfone) has exited the Philippine area of responsibility, state weather bureau PAGASA said Saturday morning.

Ursula left at least 27 people dead and scores missing after its strong winds and rains uprooted trees and power lines, and washed out hundreds of houses and fishing boats when it slammed into the Visayas over the Christmas holidays.

Several areas in Leyte, Aklan, Eastern Samar and Oriental Mindoro were placed under a state of calamity for local governments to access emergency funds to aid thousands who scrambled to evacuation centers before and during Christmas day to seek shelter from the storm.

About 90 percent of houses in Bulalacao, Oriental Mindoro were destroyed by Ursula, municipal Mayor Ernilo Villas earlier said.

Power in Capiz City and other nearby areas is still out days after Ursula wrought havoc in Aklan, including tourist haven Boracay.

Ursula's onslaught damaged about P600 million worth of crops and infrastructure.

Ursula barreled westward as it slowed down and weakened into a severe tropical storm, PAGASA said.