"It was like a 747 flying just above my roof," he said, describing the sound of the winds. He said his family and some of his neighbors whose houses were destroyed took shelter in his basement.
"When we were being swept by the water, many people were floating and raising their hands and yelling for help. But what can we do? We also needed to be helped," Torotoro said.
Weather officials said Haiyan had sustained winds of 235 kilometers per hour (147 miles per hour) with gusts of 275 kph (170 mph) when it made landfall.
"The evacuation is being conducted with urgency," disaster official Nguyen Thi Yen Linh said from central Danang City, where some 76,000 were being moved to safety.
"The rescue operation is ongoing, we expect a very high number of fatalities as well as injured," he said. "All systems, all vestiges of modern living communications, power, water all are down. Media is down, so there is no way to communicate with the people in a mass sort of way."
Ferocious winds felled large branches and snapped coconut trees. A man was shown carrying the body of his 6 year old daughter who drowned, and another image showed vehicles piled up in debris.
Before he left Tacloban on Saturday, Failon said he saw people like a "pack of rats" looting a department store taking whatever they could lay their hands on including refrigerators and TV sets. TV footage showed a group of men smiling Football Boots Magista
Vice Mayor Jim Pe of Coron town on Busuanga, the last island battered by the typhoon Nike Soccer Shoes New before it blew away to the South China Sea, said most of the houses and buildings there had been destroyed or damaged. Five people drowned in the storm surge and three others are missing, he said by phone.
Philippine broadcaster ABS CBN showed fierce winds whipping buildings and vehicles as storm surges swamped Tacloban with debris laden floodwaters.
ABS CBN television anchor Ted Failon, who was able to report only briefly Friday from Tacloban, said the storm surge was "like the tsunami in Japan."
"The sea engulfed Tacloban," he said, explaining that a major part of the city is surrounded on three sides by the waters between Leyte and Samar islands.
were on hardest hit Leyte Island, where Tacloban is located, said national disaster agency spokesman Maj. Reynaldo Balido.
The typhoon's sustained winds weakened Saturday to 163 kph (101 mph) with stronger gusts as it blew farther away from the Philippines toward Vietnam.
One Tacloban resident said he and others took refuge inside a parked Jeep to protect themselves from the storm, but the vehicle was swept away by a surging wall of water.
in different parts of the world.
The airport in Tacloban, a city of 200,000 located about 580 kilometers (360 miles) southeast of Manila, looked like a muddy wasteland of debris Saturday, with crumpled tin roofs and upturned cars. The airport tower's glass windows were shattered, and air force helicopters were busy flying in and out at the start of relief operations.
"The devastation is, I don't have the words for it," Roxas said. "It's really horrific. Marine Col. Mike Wylie surveyed the damage in Tacloban prior to possible American assistance. Secretary of State John Kerry said in a statement that America "stands ready to help."
as they walked away with a large ice cream freezer and other goods.
Nearly 800,000 people were forced to flee their homes and damage was believed to be extensive. About 4 million people were affected by the typhoon, the national disaster agency said.
In the aftermath, people were seen weeping while retrieving bodies of loved ones inside buildings and on a street that was littered with fallen trees, roofing material and other building parts torn off in the typhoon's fury. All that was left of one large building whose walls were smashed in were the skeletal remains of its rafters.
The Philippine Red Cross and its partners were preparing for a major relief effort "because of the magnitude of the disaster," said the agency's chairman, Richard Gordon.
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At least 20 more bodies were taken to a church in nearby Palo town that was used as an evacuation center but had to be abandoned when its roofs were blown away, the TV network reported. TV images showed howling winds peeling off tin roof sheets during heavy rain.
"The water was as high as a coconut tree," said 44 year old Sandy Torotoro, a bicycle taxi driver who lives near the airport with his wife and 8 year old daughter. "I got out of the jeep and I was swept away by the rampaging water with logs, trees and our house, which was ripped off from its mooring."
Over 100 dead as typhoon slams central Philippines
At least 118 of the deaths Soccer Cleats Pink
The Philippine television station GMA reported that its news team saw 11 bodies, including that of a child, washed ashore Friday and 20 more bodies at a pier in Tacloban hours after the typhoon ripped through the coastal city.
Relief workers said they were struggling to find ways to deliver food and other supplies, with roads blocked by landslides and fallen trees.
But after arriving in Tacloban on Saturday, Interior Secretary Max Roxas said it was too early to know how many people had died in the storm, which was heading toward Vietnam after moving away from the Philippines.
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