Tens of thousands flee, more flights axed due to Philippines typhoon

  • Tens of thousands flee, more flights axed due to Philippines typhoon

Tens of thousands flee, more flights axed due to Philippines typhoon

Forecasters expect Typhoon Kammuri to make landfall Monday evening or Tuesday morning, packing gusts of 170 kilometres (105 miles) per hour and maximum sustained winds of 140 kph.

"The proper timing of when to postpone them (events) is decided by the technical delegate or the one that is in charge of the sport", said Celso Dayrit, Sea Games executive committee chairman.

The Philippines is hosting the 30th South-east Asian Games that will run through Dec 11.

Manila-Some of the scheduled events of this year's South East Asian (SEA) Games in the Philippines have been cancelled or rescheduled due to the Typhoon Kammuri, which entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility over the weekend.

In preparation for the storm, over 3000 people were evacuated from their homes in the Philippines' Bicol region and have been relocated to evacuation centers.

Almost 70,000 people have already fled their homes in the Bicol region, which is where the typhoon is expected to make landfall.

The Philippines is hit by an average of 20 storms and typhoons each year, killing hundreds and putting people in disaster-prone areas in a state of constant poverty.

Majority live in coastal areas and low-lying places where flash floods and landslides are possible due to heavy rains that will be brought by the typhoon.

Typhoon Kammuri upset the scheduled events, with windsurfing, which was supposed to be held in Subic, cancelled over concerns for participants' safety.

Ramon Suzara, the chief operating officer of the organising committee, said contingency plans were in place for bad weather, but the duration of the Games would not be extended.

The storm is the latest trouble for the Games, which saw a series of transport snafus and a rush of last-minute construction ahead of the opening.

Athletes from Singapore have seen their shares of gold medals as well, with Yong Yi Xiang winning the country's first gold medal in Wushu in the men's changquan finals on December 1, Sunday. Organisers hope more than 500 million viewers will tune in on TV by the end of competition on December 11.

In an eclectic programme, Olympic sports like swimming and athletics sit side-by-side with regional favourites such as martial arts, and this year athletes will even battle an obstacle race course in Manila.