More than 700 people are missing after a ferry capsized during
typhoon Fengshen in the central Philippines. In addition, dozens of lives have
been lost in flooding and mudslides on some of the many islands that make up the
nation. Douglas Bakshian reports from Manila.
Philippine coast guard found the ferry, MV Princess of Stars, Sunday off the
coast of the central island of Sibuyan. It was capsized with only the rear part
of the keel sticking out of the water. A few survivors have been found on the
island. Several bodies also washed up there and villagers said many children's
slippers, thought to be from the ship, were washed ashore.
Search and rescue operations continue but high seas are making things
difficult. Divers are checking the wreck. The ferry, carrying more than 700
passengers and crew, left Manila Friday heading for the central island of
Cebu. However, it ran aground Saturday when its engine failed. Radio
communication was cut off following the accident.
The typhoon began slamming the cental Philippines hard on Saturday. The
central island province of Iloilo was hardest hit and many of the deaths on land
Flashfloods and mudslides took their toll.
The southern island of Mindanao also suffered flooding caused by a separate
monsoon that was given strength from the main storm system. The heavy rains
winds knocked out power supplies and flooded roads. Disaster officials
say that all together, more than 360-thousand people have been affected by the
flooding. Tens of thousands were placed in evacuation shelters until the waters
During the height of the storm, a number of domestic flights were grounded
and many ships were kept in harbor because of the rough seas. The capital,
Manila, was also
blanketed with heavy rains and strong winds, and there were
some power outages.
The storm later headed north through Luzon island. At times the typhoon
packed sustained winds of up to 140 kilometers per hour with gusts of 170
Philippines is an archipelago of more than seven-thousand
islands. It is hit by a number of typhoons and storms each year.