LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Southern California residents with loved ones in the Philippines are concerned after one of the most powerful hurricanes to make landfall struck the country Thursday night, killing at least four people.
Winds were clocked at nearly 200 mph as Super Typhoon Yolanda — also known as Haiyan — a Category 5 storm, hit the island chain.
Forecasters warn the typhoon could produce “catastrophic damage” and communications have been cut off, making it difficult for nervous relatives to reach family members.
Vic Bagalangit, whose family is in the Philippines, was horrified as he watched a video of the storm hitting land.
“Everything’s flying around,” he told KCAL9’s Melanie Woodrow. “It’s so tough for people there. … I also worry about my family there. I just called again,” he said
Jerry Degorio was preparing to call his family as well. He’s worried that his brother, a farmer, might not survive the 195 mph winds. Gusts are even stronger, reportedly reaching 380 mph.
“I’m very worried now,” he said.
More than 125,000 people have been evacuated from low-lying towns and an estimated 1 million people have fled coastal areas. Approximately 25 million people are in the path of the storm.