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Casualty reports start coming in as 'Pablo' crosses Mindanao

MANILA, Philippines - The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) started receiving reports of casualties before noon Tuesday as typhoon "Pablo" continued to cross over provinces in Mindanao.

Undersecretary Benito Ramos, chairman of the NDRRMC, said that three people were hit by toppled trees in Manay and Mati towns in Davao Oriental and one person suffered a heart attack in Mati town.

Ramos said that the agency has yet to confirm if these people were killed or just injured.

He added that one person, a fisherman identified as Juanito Polbo, went missing in waters off Liloan town in Leyte province and a landslide buried a house in New Bataan in the mining province of Compostela Valley.

Ramos earlier said that the NDRRMC is expecting lesser casualties from the typhoon because of its preemptive evacuations in areas that were in the predicted path of the weather disturbance.

"Yan ang maganda ngayon dahil nakapag-preemptive evacuation tayo, zero casualties tayo so far. Walang injury sa oras na ito," Ramos said, adding that the agency is hoping that there also be no casualties when the typhoon hits Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental.

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The NDRRMC earlier reported that more than 8,000 families have been affected by the typhoon's onslaught in Eastern Visayas, Northern Mindanao, Davao and Caraga regions.

Several flights bound to and from the affected areas have also been cancelled and classes in several areas have also been suspended.

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