Sep 15, 2018 18:45 Asia/Tehran

At least three people have died after Typhoon Mangkhut unleashed ferocious winds and rain in the Philippines, damaging an airport and forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes.

Iran Press/Asia-Strong winds continued to batter provinces in northern Luzon on Saturday morning, making it difficult to assess damage and casualties from the typhoon. Power and communication lines are down in several areas.

At least two emergency workers were killed in landslides caused by the typhoon, the government announced in an afternoon briefing on Saturday as updates from the ground started to trickle in.

Ricardo Jalad, the civil defence chief, said the initial casualties were reported from the mountainous Cordillera region, adding that there were already 41 incidents of landslides reported in the region.

In Baggao town in Cagayan where the typhoon made landfall, three power towers had been brought down. Television reports showed how the typhoon ripped off roofs and destroyed farms. Emergency workers are repairing Tuguegarao airport in northern Cagayan province after it was left inoperable.

On Saturday morning the eye of the typhoon headed out to sea from Ilocos Norte province, on the north-western tip of the country.

The storm destroyed crops such as rice and corn and blew the roofs off houses since it made landfall before dawn in Cagayan province, with winds gusting up to 255 kilometers per hour.