Science, Tech & Environment

Monster storm Haiyan batters the Philippines

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Credit: Charlie Saceda/Reuters

Residents walk along the coastal village while strong winds from Typhoon Haiyan battered Bayog town in Los Banos, Laguna, south of Manila Nov. 8, 2013.

With sustained winds up to 199 mph, Typhoon Haiyan barreled through the central Philippines on Friday. At least three people have died — though that total is expected to climb dramatically as officials reach the hardest hit areas.

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The storm caused massive havoc -- ripping the roofs off of houses, toppling power lines and cutting communication links.

Millions have been to seek shelter on the central islands of Leyte and Samar, and the northern tip of Cebu — including Cebu city, the country's second largest.

The BBC reports that, if initial estimates based on satellite images pan out, Typhoon Haiyan would be the most powerful storm ever to make landfall.

British tourist Mark Dashwood is on the Philippine island of Boracay and wasn't able to leave the island before the storm hit. Dashwood says that the trees there were almost toppled over.  

"Some of the roofs on some of the buildings were beginning to peel away and there was a lot of debris flying around."

Dashwood describes the most harrowing part of his experience happened Thursday when I was trying to escape.  "Hundreds of people were trying to do the same thing," he says. "And we were all queueing to get the last few boats that were supplied and people were pushing and screaming."    

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    Credit: Zander Casas/Reuters

    A man walks past a tree uprooted by strong winds brought by super Typhoon Haiyan that hit Cebu city, central Philippines Nov. 8, 2013.

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    Credit: Erik De Castro/Reuters

    Fishermen secure their boats in anticipation of the arrival of Typhoon Haiyan near Manila Bay in Bacoor, Cavite Nov. 8, 2013.

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    Credit: Charlie Saceda/Reuters

    Residents walk along the coastal village while strong winds from Typhoon Haiyan battered Bayog town in Los Banos, Laguna, south of Manila Nov. 8, 2013.

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    Credit: Romeo Ranoco/Reuters

    Cebu Pacific airways planes park at the tarmac at Ninoy Aquino International airport in Pasay city, metro Manila Nov. 8, 2013, after nearly 200 local flights have been suspended due to Typhoon Haiyan that hit central Philippines on Friday.

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    Credit: NASA Goddard MODIS Rapid Response Team

    Super Typhoon Haiyan as it approached the Philippines.

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