It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep.
Let's get some perspective now on the destruction in the Philippines.
WERTHEIMER: Almost any death toll we might give today would be unreliable. But we do know that hundreds of thousands of people who survived the storm are now living without shelter. They now face the challenge of finding basics like food and water.
Gun-toting militiamen man the steel gate that leads into the Tripoli zoo. A sign promises a garden of animals. Inside, there are paths that meander through a maze of cages and animal habitats. Monkeys climb trees; hippos submerge themselves in water and lions lounge in the heat.
Just a few hundred yards away, there's a different kind of cage: Inside there are people — migrants waiting to be deported or to prove they are in Libya legally.
Originally published on Tue November 12, 2013 2:01 am
Images of the swath of devastation wrought by Typhoon Haiyan in the central Philippines are reminiscent of the tsunami's aftermath in Banda Aceh, Indonesia nearly a decade ago.
And indeed, the World Health Organization grades the great typhoon of 2013 as a Category 3 disaster – its most severe category.
"The scale [of the typhoon's damage] is huge," Dr. Richard Brennan of the World Health Organization tells Shots. "It's monumental. This is one of the biggest emergencies we've dealt with in some time."
A billboard announces discounts on cosmetic treatments in a street of Cali, Valle del Cauca department, Colombia. In recent years the country has been building facilities specifically designed for medical tourists.
International medical tourism is big business worldwide. Countries like India and Thailand lead the way as top destinations for people looking for high quality care at a fraction of the cost back home.
Lately, countries closer to the U.S. are also trying to break into the market — such as Colombia — which until recently was better known for drug trafficking than nose jobs.
Many Filipinos living in the United States are frantically trying to get in touch with loved ones in some of the areas hardest hit by the typhoon. California, with about a million Filipino immigrants, is the center for a large fundraising effort.
Los Angeles is home to one of the largest concentrations of Filipino immigrants in the U.S. Many across this city are glued to the local Asian TV stations' nightly news broadcasts. Some are turning their worry and stress into action, pounding the pavement to raise money for typhoon victims.
This map from the NOAA Environmental Visualization Laboratory shows the amount of heat energy available to Typhoon Haiyan between Oct. 28 and Nov. 3. Darker purple indicates more available energy. Typhoons gain their strength by drawing heat out of the ocean. The path of the storm is marked with the black line in the center of the image.
Credit NOAA Office of Coast Survey
Typhoon Haiyan struck the Leyte Gulf, in the Philippines, nearly dead-on, creating a 13-foot storm surge that funneled water into Tacloban city.
Joyce spoke with storm surge expert Carl Drews, of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Colorado. Dawes says the surge was greatest at Tacloban City, where the Leyte Gulf narrows into the San Pedro and San Pablo Bay.
"That is about the worst path and the worst place for surge," Drews says.