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Tropical storm rakes Philippines; 18 dead

By the CNN Wire Staff
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T.S. Conson blasts Philippines
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Nearly 500 houses reported damaged
  • Storm is back over South China Sea
  • Philippines recovering; power is out in many areas
  • Most roads and bridges are passable
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(CNN) -- Eighteen people were killed, and 57 others are missing, as Tropical Storm Conson moved over the Philippines, the country's National Disaster Coordinating Council reported Wednesday.

The storm, known locally as "Basyang," had weakened slightly, the council said. As of 4 p.m. Wednesday (4 a.m. ET), its maximum sustained winds were at 53 mph (85 kph) near its center and gusts of up to 62 mph (100 kph).

Conson made landfall on the northern Philippine island of Luzon late Tuesday, about 41 miles (66 kilometers) east of the capital, Manila. It was back over the South China Sea, about 112 miles (180 kilometers) west of Iba, as of Wednesday afternoon.

Four people died when a warehouse under construction collapsed, the council said. Several people were hit by fallen debris and several others drowned. Twelve people were injured by debris. The missing included 25 fishermen.

Nearly 500 houses were reported damaged. Many were still without power, although it had been restored in some areas. More than 4,000 people were stranded in various ports along with 26 vessels, the council said.

The storm is expected to move into southern China on Friday, but the Joint Typhoon Warning Center is predicting little or no intensification before landfall there. Heavy rain and flooding will be a concern for southern China.

The storm became the first typhoon of 2010 on Monday before losing some steam. While some flooding was reported after heavy rains, most roads and bridges were passable, the council said.

 
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