Aftermath of Typhoon Mangkhut reveals dangers of Philippines mining

People clean-up debris caused by Typhoon Mangkhut outside a housing estate on the waterfront in Hong Kong on Monday.- AFP

Philippines halts risky mining in mountains hit by typhoon

Dozens of people sought shelter there during the storm despite warnings it was unsafe.

The Mayor of the town has said that it's unlikely any of the dozens of people thought to be buried will be found alive.

Many of those buried in Itogon were small-scale gold miners and their families who took refuge in a building abandoned by a large mining firm. Three villagers who managed to escape told authorities what happened. Officials earlier said that they were looking for up to 100 people - mostly local miners and their families. He expressed sadness that the villagers, many of them poor, had few options to survive in a region where big corporations have profited immensely from gold mines.

But rescuers are still digging through the massive mound of mud and debris covering a chapel where they had sheltered.

"I really feel sad, I can not describe the emotion", he said. "We are still counting inventory because many dinghies and kayaks were piled up or lost during powerful waves".

Many of these windows were seen swaying in the wind gusts.

The reason for the extensive damage to Hong Kong, despite the fact the storm passed to the south of the city, was the wide eye and swathe of hurricane force winds, the higher than anticipated storm surge and also the duration of the impacts, with typhoon force winds impacting the city for around 12 hours (twice as long as with Hato). "The storm slowed as it made landfall in mainland China's Pearl River Delta region".

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What was left of Mangkhut went on to wreak havoc on neighboring Macau on Sunday, which suspended normal casino operations for the first time ever.

The incident also injured 11 people, completely destroyed seven houses and damaged six others.

AsiaWorld Expo event was cancelled on its final day on Sunday, however according to the Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair website the bump out period ran on 17 September as scheduled. The government and casinos took extra measures ahead of the storm, determined to avoid a repeat of Typhoon Hato which battered Macau a year ago, killing 12 people and drawing accusations the city was ill-prepared. Morales said he sent another bus to the rescue and bring the group back to their hotel. Police and their vehicles could not immediately reach the landslide-hit area because the ground was unstable and soaked from the heavy rains, regional police chief Rolando Nana told the ABS-CBN TV network.

More than 2.4m people had been evacuated in southern China's Guangdong province by Sunday evening. The missing persons count has rose up to 13 for now with more reports to arrive soon.

Philippine Red Cross Chairman Richard Gordon said, "Philippine Red Cross has been in action before and during Typhoon Ompong".

Across northern Luzon, which produces much of the nation s rice and corn, farms were under muddy floodwater, their crops ruined just a month before harvest.

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