Typhoon Goni: 15 dead and 5,000 forced to flee homes after northern Philippines hit by floods and landslides

Landslides have killed eight people so far, while others have been swept away by floods or pinned to death by falling debris

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The Independent Online

At least 10 people have died and two are missing after Typhoon Goni hit the northern Philippines, forcing more than 5,000 to flee their homes, officials have said.

Pounding rain and winds set off landslides and flooded low-lying villages, with sustained winds of up to 150 kilometers (93 miles) per hour and gusts of up to 185 kph (115 mph).

The typhoon picked up speed later on 21 August and was forecast to start blowing away from the country by Sunday, passing to the east of Taiwan before heading toward Okinawa, Japan.

In the Benguet province, one of the worst-affected areas, landslides killed at least eight people, including two brothers who were buried alive in a temporary shelter where they took cover in Bakun town.

Large portions of the mountain provinces are without power after Typhoon Goni swept through the northern Philippines

Another villager died in a landslide in Mountain Province, while a man was pinned to death by a fallen tree in Ilocos Norte province, according to the Office of Civil Defense.

More than 5,400 villagers were moved to storm shelters in six northern provinces.

Several flights and ferry trips have been cancelled and authorities scrapped classes in several towns in metropolitan Manila and nearby provinces due to flooding and danger from high winds.

A Filipino girl maneuvers on a makeshift bridge at a swelling river in Las Pinas city, south of Manila, Philippines

Goni, which is Korean for swan, is the ninth of about such 20 storms and typhoons that are expected to batter the Philippines this year.

Typhoon Haiyan, one of the most ferocious storms on record to hit land, devastated large areas of the central Philippines in November 2013, leaving more than 7,300 people dead or missing.