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Typhoon Bopha has hit the Philippines causing major disruption and loss of life. Around 200 people are thought to have died as a result of sustained 120mph winds and flash flooding. Though terrible, the death toll is thought to be much lower than the 1300+ killed by the much weaker Typhoon Washi that hit the same area last year.
The lower death toll is being being attributed to better preparation for the typhoon. People were warned by government appeals, the media and phone messages and evacuated to safer buildings and higher ground.
There has been substantial damage to infrastructure and agriculture with 70-80% of the banana plantations destroyed in Compostela Valley. The tropical storm has weakened, though still with winds over 100mph and is moving north west into the south China Sea.
Dozens of domestic flights and ferry services in central and southern Philippines were cancelled.
Those who face challenges as a result of travel disruption can face additional bills for alternative accommodation, continuing their trip or finding another way to get home. As a weather related event, most travellers with travel insurance should be able to claim for disruption or abandonment.
Standard travel insurance policies do not generally cover "Acts of God” such as Earthquake, Tsunami and Volcanic activity. However, there are policies available that will offer assistance in these scenarios. See our article on Travel Insurance with Tsunami Cover or Travel insurance covering Volcanic Ash Clouds for more information.