Heavy rain pummels flooded Philippines

Published August 19, 2013

| AFP

Torrential rain relentlessly battered the flood-soaked Philippine capital and surrounding farming areas on Tuesday, raising fears that the toll from monsoons which have killed three this week would climb higher.

Schools and government offices in Manila and many neighbouring regions were closed for a second consecutive day, as floods swelled high into urban as well as rural homes.

The state weather agency warned the rain would continue through Tuesday, issuing its top level red alert for Manila and neighbouring provinces.

The red alert means "serious flooding" is likely in low-lying areas, and more than three centimetres (1.8 inches) of rain is expected every hour.

Three people had already been confirmed killed and four others were missing due to the rains, according to the government's disaster agency's latest tally on Monday night.

Most of the victims were in the mountainous north of the main island of Luzon, more than 200 kilometres (120 miles) from Manila.

The heavy rains were due to the seasonal monsoon being exacerbated by Tropical Storm Trami, known locally as Maring, which was hovering to the north of the Philippines.

The Southeast Asian archipelago endures about 20 major storms or typhoons annually, generally in the second half of the year and many of them deadly.

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