At Least 10,000 Killed by Philippines Super-Typhoon

At least 10,000 people in the central Philippines are now reported dead after Typhoon Haiyan sent a tsunami-like surge of water and debris tearing through Leyte province, according to statements from a senior police official on Sunday.

The estimated death count, which increased nearly ten-fold from Saturday, could rise even higher as rescue workers struggle to reach highly damaged areas where survivors are searching the wreckage for loved ones and foraging for food.

“We have no food, we need water and other things to survive,” Edward Gualberto told AFP at the outskirts of Tacloban—the coastal city hardest hit by the super-storm.

“People are walking like zombies looking for food,” said Jenny Chu, a medical student in Leyte, in an interview with Reuters.

At least 1,200 lives have been lost, the Red Cross estimates, after super-typhoon Haiyan, likely the strongest storm to ever make landfall, slammed into the Philippines, leaving cities and towns in coastal areas devastated and bodies rotting in the streets.

“We estimate 1,000 people were killed in Tacloban and 200 in Samar province,” said Gwendolyn Pang, secretary general of the Philippine Red Cross, of these island areas.

While the red cross expects to have a more precise count Sunday, they say it could take days to measure the true scale of this human tragedy, as communications are down in some of the hardest-hit areas.