Authorities said the rescuers were wading through floodwaters when a wall beside them collapsed, sending them into the fast current.

Residents wait on the roof of their homes, for flooding to subside after Super Typhoon Noru, in San Miguel, Bulacan province, Philippines, September 26, 2022.
Residents wait on the roof of their homes, for flooding to subside after Super Typhoon Noru, in San Miguel, Bulacan province, Philippines, September 26, 2022. (Reuters)

Five rescuers were killed in the Philippines after they were sent to a flooded community during a powerful typhoon, authorities said on Monday, the first confirmed casualties of the strongest storm to hit the country this year.

The typhoon dumped heavy rain and unleashed fierce winds as it swept across the main island of Luzon on Sunday and Monday, toppling trees and flooding low-lying communities.

So far, there have been no reports of widespread severe damage.

The five rescuers were in San Miguel municipality in Bulacan province, near the capital Manila, when they died.

"They were deployed by the provincial government to a flooded area," said Lieutenant-Colonel Romualdo Andres, chief of police in San Miguel.

Andres said the rescuers were wading through floodwaters when a wall beside them collapsed, sending them into the fast current.

READ MORE: Philippines braces for super typhoon, evacuates coasts

Super Typhoon Noru

The Philippines is regularly ravaged by storms, with scientists warning they are becoming more powerful as the world gets warmer because of climate change.

Super Typhoon Noru smashed into the archipelago nation on Sunday after an unprecedented "explosive intensification" in wind speeds, the state weather forecaster said earlier.

It made landfall about 100 kilometres (62 miles) northeast of the densely populated capital Manila, before weakening to a typhoon as it crossed a mountain range, coconut plantations and rice fields.

Nearly 75,000 people were evacuated from their homes before the storm hit, as the meteorology agency warned heavy rain could cause "serious flooding" in vulnerable areas, trigger landslides and destroy crops.

But on Monday morning there was no sign of the widespread devastation many had feared.

"We were ready for all of this," President Ferdinand Marcos Jr told a briefing with disaster agencies.

"You might think that we overdid it. There is no such thing as overkill when it comes to disasters."

Despite taking the full force of the typhoon, authorities said it passed over quickly and there were so far no reports of major damage to houses. But some crops were wiped out.

READ MORE: Japan reels from the aftermath of deadly Typhoon Nanmadol

Source: AFP