Thousands evacuated in Philippines amid massive floods

Manila: Thousands of families in Metro Manila and nearby provinces in the Philippines were evacuated to higher places due to flooding triggered by heavy rains, authorities said Friday.

According to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), heavy rains were spawned by tropical storm Fung-Wong (local name Mario), which was moving toward northern Luzon, with maximum sustained winds of 85 kmph and gustiness of up to 100 kmph, Xinhua reported.

Red rainfall warning, which means that severe flooding is expected, was raised in Metro Manila and the provinces of Laguna and Rizal, PAGASA said .

Upon the recommendation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. also announced the suspension of classes in all levels, public and private, in Metro Manila and 16 other nearby provinces in northern Philippines, as rain was predicted to prevail until afternoon.

Work in government offices has been suspended except for basic and health services, disaster response and other vital public services, Ochoa said.

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