This weekend’s devastating storms, in photos

Cleanup efforts have begun after a cyclone hit India and a typhoon struck the Philippines

Topics: Natural Disasters, India, Philippines, Typhoon, ,

Cyclone Phailin made landfall in India Saturday night, causing massive damage and forcing 800,000 to evacuate. Before the storm struck, authorities were comparing it to a 1999 storm that killed over 10,000 in the same region. But Phailin’s impact wasn’t as bad as anticipated: five have so far been reported dead, and there’s reason to believe the death toll won’t rise much higher than that. In part, this is because the cyclone — which filled up almost the entirety of the Bay of Bengal — weakened before making landfall. The New York Times also credits India’s preparation efforts for the outcome:

There are many reasons for the change, but a vastly improved communications system is probably the most important. Nearly a billion people routinely use mobile phones in India, up from fewer than 40 million at the turn of the century. Even many of the poorest villages now have televisions, and India’s media market is saturated with 24-hour news channels that have blanketed the nation’s airwaves with coverage of the storm.

Many villagers refused to leave land and livestock during the worst of the storm, according to many reports. But almost none were unaware of the coming danger. And that is a huge change.

The Philippines, meanwhile, experienced its 19th storm of the season. Typhoon Nari, which struck Saturday, killed at least 13, flooded farmlands and destroyed thousands of homes. Authorities say the storm displaced over 43,000 people; 1,900 boat passengers are currently stranded at scattered ports.

In both countries, cleanup efforts are well underway today. Below, a look at what those hit hardest are dealing with:

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    AP/Bikas Das

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    An Indian man with his bicycle makes his way through uprooted tree fallen during Cyclone Phailin on a road, in Berhampur, India, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Bikas Das

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    Indian municipal workers cut an uprooted tree from Cyclone Phailin to clear a main highway, in Berhampur, India, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Bikas Das

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    An Indian municipal workers cuts an uprooted tree from Cyclone Phailin to clear a main highway, in Berhampur, India, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Bikas Das

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    An Indian woman carries away a branch of an uprooted tree from Cyclone Phailin as municipal workers clear a main highway in Berhampur, India, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Biswaranjan Rout

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A man wears a helmet and walks past high waves of the Bay of Bengal at Gopalpur beach in Ganjam district, about 200 kilometers (125 miles) from the eastern Indian city Bhubaneswar, India, Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A Filipino boy rests his foot on the damaged wall of his house that was caused by strong winds and floods brought about by Typhoon Nari at San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines, on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A man carries salvaged steel sheets from a damaged house after typhoon Nari hit San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A woman passes by a jeepney that was washed away by strong currents from floods after typhoon Nari hit San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A Filipino resident sits inside his damaged house after typhoon Nari hit San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    Residents stand outside their damaged house after typhoon Nari hit San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Aaron Favila

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    A Filipino uses a chainsaw to cut toppled trees after typhoon Nari hit San Miguel town, Bulacan province, northern Philippines on Sunday, Oct. 13, 2013.

    AP/Bullit Marquez

    Cyclone Phailin and Typhoon Nari hit land

    Motorists brave the raging floodwaters brought about by Typhoon "Nari" to get across a highway at San Ildefonso township, Bulacan province, north of Manila, Philippines Saturday Oct. 12, 2013.

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Lindsay Abrams
Lindsay Abrams is a staff writer at Salon, reporting on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email labrams@salon.com.

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