Philippines Landslide Death Toll Rises To 54

by | Feb 12, 2024 | Daily News, Environmental News

Home » Environmental News » Philippines Landslide Death Toll Rises To 54

The southern Philippines is grappling with the aftermath of a devastating landslide that struck the gold-mining village of Masara in Davao de Oro province, with the death toll now standing at 54 and 63 individuals still unaccounted for. The Philippines landslide disaster occurred on Tuesday night, following weeks of relentless torrential rains that have battered the region.

In a distressing update shared via a Facebook post, the provincial government of Davao de Oro announced that the number of fatalities from the Philippines landslide had risen from an initial count of 37 earlier in the day, as rescue teams uncovered more victims amidst the debris. The landslide has not only claimed numerous lives but also left at least 32 residents injured, while the fate of 63 others hangs in the balance.

The tragedy struck particularly hard among the local gold miners, many of whom were awaiting transportation home in two buses when the landslide enveloped them, sealing their fate under layers of earth and rubble. The community has been plunged into mourning as the search for survivors and the bodies of the deceased continues.

Philippines Landslide Death Toll Rises To 54

Edward Macapili, a local official, reported that over 300 individuals are partaking in the arduous rescue efforts. However, these operations face significant challenges due to continuous heavy rainfall, the perilous mud conditions, and the looming threat of additional landslides. Despite the grim circumstances and the dwindling likelihood of finding survivors, Macapili affirmed to the Reuters news agency that the rescue teams remain committed to their mission, stating, “The rescue team is doing its best, even if it’s tough.

The calamity unfolded as a massive deluge of rocks, mud, and vegetation cascaded over 700 meters down a steep slope near the Apex Mining Co concession, engulfing a 22-acre section of the Masara community. In a rare glimmer of hope amidst the tragedy, a three-year-old girl was miraculously rescued from the wreckage on Friday, offering a moment of solace to the otherwise grim rescue operations.

Over 1,100 families have been relocated to evacuation centers to ensure the community’s safety. The region has been plagued by adverse weather conditions, with periodic heavy rains inciting numerous landslides and floods that have driven thousands to seek refuge in emergency shelters. Additionally, the area has suffered from the impacts of earthquakes in recent months, further compounding the challenges faced by the residents.

Landslides are a recurring menace throughout the Philippines, attributed to a combination of factors, including the nation’s mountainous topography, the frequency of heavy rainfall, and the consequences of extensive deforestation due to mining activities, slash-and-burn agriculture, and illegal logging practices. This latest tragedy underscores the urgent need for enhanced disaster preparedness and environmental conservation efforts in the region.

Also Read: Climbers Express Concern Over Visible Human Waste On Everest Rocks

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  • Sarah Tancredi

    Sarah Tancredi is an experienced journalist and news reporter specializing in environmental and climate crisis issues. With a deep passion for the planet and a commitment to raising awareness about pressing environmental challenges, Sarah has dedicated her career to informing the public and promoting sustainable solutions. She strives to inspire individuals, communities, and policymakers to take action to safeguard our planet for future generations.

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