Death toll in Nepal floods rises to 55, thousands displaced

Robie de Guzman   •   July 15, 2019   •   1353

The death toll in Nepal from flash floods and landslides rose to 55 on Sunday (July 14), with dozens missing and injured, the government said.

Ten thousand people have been displaced from their homes as incessant monsoon rains pounded many areas in mostly mountainous Nepal since Thursday (July 11), submerging large areas of land, inundating homes, and destroying bridges and roads across the country.

A Home Ministry statement said 55 people had been confirmed dead and 33 injured, with 30 still missing.

India’s north eastern state of Assam has also been hard hit by the floods brought by the monsoon, with at least 1.5 million people displaced and 10 dead.

In the Chittagong division of Bangladesh there have been 10 deaths and about 500,000 displaced, with 200 villages flooded.

Officials said in some areas rains had eased but rivers in the eastern part of the country were still above flood level.

The Kosi River, which flows into the eastern Indian state of Bihar, was among those that had risen above the flood level.

The Kosi has been a serious concern for both India and Nepal since it broke its banks in 2008 and changed course, submerging large areas of land and affecting more than 2 million people in India’s Bihar state. (REUTERS)

(Production: Emily Cooper)

Australia bushfires death toll increases to 26

UNTV News   •   January 8, 2020

Sydney – Australian authorities confirmed Wednesday the death of a firefighter as a result of bushfires that have ravaged the country since September, bringing the death toll to 26.

Matt Kavanagh, 43, died wile on duty after a Friday crash between two vehicles which police linked to the bushfires, Victoria’s Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville said.

This is the third death in Victoria due to the fires, which have already caused 20 fatalities in New South Wales and three more in South Australia.

The confirmation came as firefighters continued their struggle to control dozens of fires that have been raging in the country’s southeast as temperatures are expected to rise above 40C (104F) at the end of the week.

On Tuesday, they took advantage of improved weather conditions to bolster preparations against the blazes that continue to burn in those areas.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, during a visit to Kangaroo Island – the country’s third largest isle – told reporters weather conditions were expected to worsen in the coming days.

Two people died on the island at the end of the year amid the fires still blazing countrywide.

The fires have burned more than 50 houses and almost half of this tourist island, located some 112 kilometers (69.5 miles) from Adelaide, home to 60,000 kangaroos, 50,000 koalas and other endangered animals who are suffering the catastrophe’s consequences.

The Insurance Council of Australia said Tuesday a total AU$700 million ($485 million) of accumulated damages have been recorded since September, with nearly 9,000 fire-related claims.

Morrison, heavily criticized for his handling of the crisis, announced Monday a package of AU$2 billion over the next two years to finance the recovery of affected areas.

The fires have razed more than 8 million hectares of land throughout the country, equivalent to the area of Austria, including some 2,000 homes.

They broke out before the beginning of summer in the southern hemisphere, which begins in December and where a shortage of rain is expected until the end of March. EFE-EPA

wat/tk-sk/lds

Lifesaver: How to treat fireworks-related burns and injuries

Robie de Guzman   •   December 31, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The government has been calling on the public to ditch fireworks and other pyrotechnic devices for safer noise-maker alternatives to avoid any injuries during the celebration of the holidays.

However, there are some people who just can’t help themselves from setting those firecrackers off so UNTV’s Lifesaver program has prepared first-aid tips on how to treat burns and injuries related to the use of fireworks.

Lifesaver program host, UNTV News and Rescue Manager Benedict Galazan, said there are different first aid treatments for different types of fireworks accidents.

He, however, stressed that these are only temporary measures as victims should be immediately rushed to the nearest hospital.

Here are the first-aid tips:

  • For first degree burns, the burned or injured area should be washed under cool running water for 10 to 15 minutes to ease the pain and remove traces of chemical powder.
  • Cover the burned area using a clean cloth and, if necessary, immediately bring the victim to the hospital.

First-degree burns are considered mild and result in pain and reddening of the skin.

  • For second degree burns, run cool water on the wound for 10 to 15 minutes to stop the bleeding and ease the pain.
  • Cover the wound with a clean cloth or plastic wrap then bring the victim to the nearest hospital.

Second-degree burns affect the epidermis and lower layer of the skin and may cause pain, redness, and blistering.

When blistering occurs, the swollen area of the skin should not be popped.

“‘Yung mga blister o paltos ay huwag puputukin. Kasi iyan po ang pinaka-defense mechanism ng katawan ‘yan na kapag may heat na naramdaman ang katawan, magpo-produce siya ng liquid para ‘yun din ang makatulong sa pagcool-down ng burn,” Galazan said.

  • For third-degree burns, run the wound on cool water for 10 to 15 minutes to stop the bleeding and ease the pain.
  • Carefully put pressure on the injured area to control the bleeding.
  • Do NOT apply toothpaste, cream or any oil-based ointment to the wound or burn.
  • Cover the injured area with a clean cloth or plastic wrap then bring the victim to the hospital.

Third-degree burns affect the dermis and deeper skin tissues and may result in white or blackened, charred skin that may be numb.

  • For injured fingers, hands and other limbs, Lifesaver advises to run the injured part under cool water. Do NOT use ice.
  • If the fingers are still intact, run it as well on cool water.
  • If some fingers or other body parts are dismembered or lost, apply pressure using a tourniquet or any device (bandage and stick, rope or belt) to a limb or extremity to limit – but not stop – the flow of blood.
  • Also, try to look for the dismembered finger, and wrap them in a clean cloth. Place them inside a sealed plastic bag and put it in ice.
  • Bring the victim and the dismembered body part to the nearest hospital.

Dismembered limbs need to be brought with the victim to the hospital as these may still be reattached through surgery.

  • For eye injuries, flush the affected eye with cool water to remove any traces of firecracker powder.
  • Do NOT scratch or touch the injured eye.
  • If it is bleeding, use gauze or a paper cup to cover and protect the injured eye. Be careful not to put pressure on the eye.
  • Bring the patient to the nearest hospital

For ingestion or firecracker or its powder, here are the first aid tips:

  • Let the patient drink raw egg whites. Health experts recommend six to eight egg whites to a child and eight to 12 to an adult.
  • The patient should not attempt to throw up the ingested firecracker to prevent further damage.
  • Bring the victim to the nearest hospital.

Remember, if the wound is larger than the size of the palm of the hand, immediately bring the victim to the nearest hospital or call emergency medical services such as 8-911-UNTV.

Watch the episode of Lifesaver below for more first aid tips on firecracker burns:

– RRD (Correspondent Harlene Delgado contributed to this report)

Typhoon ‘Ursula’ leaves 47 dead, 9 still missing

Marje Pelayo   •   December 30, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The death toll from Typhoon Ursula has climbed to 47 while 9 others remain missing.

Meanwhile, a total of 143 individuals were injured, according to authorities.

Based on the latest data gathered by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), more than a million families (1.979M) were affected by the weather system.

Also, a total of 27, 263 families remain in evacuation centers.

Typhoon Ursula has left more than one billion pesos-worth of damage to agriculture and infrastructure.

Because of the extent of damage, 10 municipalities are now under a state of calamity, specifically the town of San Jose in Occidental Mindoro; Kalibo in Aklan; Libertad in Antique; Sigma in Capiz; Carles and Concepcion in Iloilo.

Also, under a state of calamity are the cities of Madridejos in Cebu; Borongan in Eastern Samar; Tacloban City in Leyte; and Daram in Samar.

Meanwhile, the government is currently working on providing the needs of those affected by the typhoon. MNP (with details from Vincent Arboleda)

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