August 4

This Day in History

Disaster

Aug 4, 1972:

Philippines hit hard by flooding

Floodwaters finally recede in Luzon, Philippines, on this day in 1972, revealing devastation and hundreds dead. An astounding rainfall in July had caused rivers all over the large island to flood.

One storm after another battered Luzon in July 1972. Manila received nearly 70 inches of rain during the month. On July 13, a monsoon caused several dikes to fail and 32 people lost their lives in the resulting flood. Less than a week later, a typhoon dropped even more rain on the already saturated region. Dikes throughout the area broke down, flooding large swaths of land. Millions were left homeless and 142 people died. Nearly all major and minor roads were under water or mud.

The flooding continued until the rivers finally peaked on August 4. In addition to the thousands of people forced from their homes, the rice crop for the season was lost. Food riots broke out in several places and looting was rampant. Cholera and typhoid epidemics also resulted.

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