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More than 50 people are reported to have been killed after a typhoon hit the Philippines.

Typhoon Bopha brought winds gusting to more than 200 kilometres per hour that caused flash-floods and landslides on the southern island of Mindanao.

Authorities moved quickly to get people to safety. More than 155-thousand people have taken refuge in shelters.

One refugee said: “I was in the kitchen, then I heard a crack. Something fell on the whole house. Everything collapsed.”

Local media reported some people were swept away in rivers swollen by an enormous quantity of rain that descended on the island.

One feature of Typhoon Bopha is a storm cloud covering that is 500 kilometres across.

A group of 13 fishermen who had been retrieving their catch from offshore nets had to be rescued when the ferocity of the storm took them by surprise. Off the eastern coast, four more fishermen were reported missing.

Authorities had cut the power early to reduce the risk of electrocution and fire breaking out.

The Philippines sees about 20 typhoons per year. This one is now heading for the South China Sea.

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