|Image: Reuters (Romeo Ranoco)|
Super Typhoon Haiyan has battered the east coast of the Philippines, killing thousands, destroying whole townships and laying waste the country’s tourism industry.
Extreme winds and ocean surges have slammed Tacloban, the provincial capital of Leyte, piling bodies in the streets and leaving hundreds more seriously injured, The Australian reported.
Australian travellers to the Philippines have been advised to contact their tour operators for the latest updates on bookings and to reconsider the need for travel.
While Tacloban’s Romualdez Airport remains closed due to severe damage, eight of the country’s airports have been re-opened, with two more hubs due to return to service this week, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP).
While the province of Leyte is believed to have been the worst hit thus far, the extent of damage has travelled much further, over a 600km stretch of islands through the central Philippines.
Hundreds of flights to and from the Philippines have been cancelled over the past few days, while authorities in Vietnam have begun mass evacuations in central Danang and Quang Ngai provinces.
More than 10,000 people are feared dead and thousands more injured.
“The major tourist destinations of Boracay and Cebu have not been affected by the typhoon,” Philippines Department of Tourism Attaché Australia Consuelo Jones said.
Stay tuned to ETB News for the latest updates and information on this tragic incident.