Typhoon Blasts Philippines, At Least Four Dead03:22
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Soldiers make the rounds to enforce the evacuation of residents as powerful typhoon Haiyan hits Legazpi city, Albay province about 325 miles south of Manila, Philippines, Friday, Nov. 8, 2013. (Nelson Salting/AP)
Soldiers make the rounds to enforce the evacuation of residents as powerful typhoon Haiyan hits Legazpi city, Albay province about 325 miles south of Manila, Philippines, Friday, Nov. 8, 2013. (Nelson Salting/AP)

One of the strongest storms on record slammed into the central Philippines on Friday, killing at least four people, forcing hundreds of thousands from their homes and knocking out power and communications in several provinces. But the nation appeared to avoid a major disaster because the rapidly moving typhoon blew away before wreaking more damage, officials said.

Huge Typhoon Haiyan raced across a string of islands from east to west - Samar, Leyte, Cebu and Panay - and lashed beach communities. Nearly 750,000 people were forced to flee their homes.

Weather officials said Haiyan had sustained winds of 147 mph with gusts of 170 mph when it made landfall. That makes it the world's strongest typhoon this year, said Aldczar Aurelio of the government's weather bureau.

Due to cut-off communications, it was impossible to know the full extent of casualties and damage.

Journalist Aurora Almendral joins us from the capital Manila.

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This segment aired on November 8, 2013.

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