Evacuation ordered in Philippines as typhoon approaches

Manila, Dec 25 (IANS) Philippine disaster officials on Saturday ordered people living in coastal villages south of Manila to move to safer places as Typhoon Nock-ten is approaching the country.

Speaking for the national disaster agency, Mina Marasigan told reporters that evacuation has got underway along the coastlines of Albay province to avoid possible storm surge and strong winds, Xinhua news agency reported.

She said alert levels have been raised in many provinces that are in the path of Typhoon Nock-ten. The typhoon is expected to make landfall in Virac, Catandunaes province on Sunday afternoon or evening.

The bureau warned in its 5 p.m. (local time) bulletin that the typhoon, packing maximum winds of up to 175 km per hour and gusts of up to 215 km per hour, could trigger a storm surge of up to 2 m in at least 10 provinces.

Several flights have been cancelled, stranding many passengers who wish to spend Christmas eve and Christmas with their families in the provinces.