Satellite image of the Typhoon storm Rai on the 16th of December 2021. | © HI / Cyclocane
An exceptionally intense typhoon passed through the centre of the Philippine archipelago this Thursday. HI’s teams in the country are preparing to move into the affected areas.
Several tens of thousands of people have been forced to leave their homes to seek shelter as super typhoon Rai made landfall. Bringing with it winds of up to 200 kmph, the typhoon hit several islands in the middle of the day. Large swathes of inhabited areas are at a direct risk of flooding, landslides and the destruction of infrastructure.
HI’s teams on the ground are preparing to get out to the affected areas as soon as circumstances allow. In this type of situation, the aim is to very rapidly assess the needs of the population, particularly the most vulnerable, in order to determine what type of assistance to provide most urgently.
HI has been a leading natural disaster response actor for several years. In 2020, the organisation was involved in the emergency response to typhoon Rolly-Goni and this year a study of landslides was carried out with a range of partners to better understand and prepare for the phenomenon. HI will also launch a project in 2022 to review the country’s disaster preparedness and alert mechanisms.
The Philippine archipelago is one of the most disaster-prone regions in the world. Typhoons are a common occurrence and their after-effects - landslides, flooding, and flash floods - are devastating.
Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in November 2013, claimed 8,000 lives and impacted nearly 15 million people.
In the last twenty years, over 31,000 people have been killed and 98 million people affected by natural disasters in the country.