Fri, August 10, 2012

Heavy rains force Philippine president's copter to make emergency landing

2012-08-10 03:18:09 GMT2012-08-10 11:18:09(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

MANILA, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) -- The helicopter carrying Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III and some government officials was forced to make an emergency landing at the Subic-Clark-Tarlac ( SCTEX) expressway on Friday after heavy rains reduced visibility.

Aquino was on his way to the northern Philippine province of Tarlac to visit the victims of flood in some areas when his helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing.

Secretary Ramon Carandang of the Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office (PCDSPO) told reporters in a text message that no one was injured and the president and his party proceeded to the town of Paniqui in Tarlac.

"En route to Paniqui, Tarlac, shortly before 9 a.m., the president's convoy encountered heavy rains forcing the copter to land at the end of SCTEX. The convoy after a slight delay, proceeded as scheduled to the area to be visited by the president. No one was injured," said Carandang.

Aside from Paniqui, Aquino will also visit other towns and provinces in northern Philippines such as Capas in Tarlac, Dinalupihan in Bataan, San Fernando in Pampanga, and Obando and Malolos in Bulacan to check on the evacuees and other flood victims in these areas.

According to news reports, at least 49 people died and over 2 million people were affected by Manila's worst flooding since 2009. More than half of the sprawling metropolis of 12 million was submerged at the peak, and schools and offices have been closed for days.


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