The death toll from the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year has topped 400, with 82 still missing. More than half a million people were displaced by Typhoon Rai, which battered central and southern provinces one week before Christmas.
Rai left entire communities levelled, knocked out power and communication lines, toppled trees and caused infrastructure to collapse. Damage to agriculture, houses and infrastructure was estimated at more than 23.42 billion pesos (468:53 million dollars).
Of the 405 fatalities, 96 were reported from the central province of Bohol, where 15 people were still reported missing. The nearby provinces of Negros Oriental reported 66 dead. Negros Occidental province reported 50 dead and Cebu province 58 dead. Thirty people were still missing in Negros Occidental.
President Rodrigo Duterte has declared a state of calamity in the areas affected by Rai to speed up relief operations and rehabilitation, The disaster agency said so far, electricity has been restored to 205 out of 284 areas that lost power, while 165 of 244 areas were still having problems with communication lines Only two of seven airports that were damaged were still not operational.