As many as 10,000 people are thought to have died—in a single city—in the wrath of Typhoon Haiyan, a jolting estimate that surfaced today as the reeling Philippines began to take stock of the storm's devastating aftermath. Leyte province's capital, Tacloban, bore the brunt of the storm, and the AP describes a chaotic scene with bodies hanging from tree branches, looters desperately seeking food and water, and President Benigno Aquino considering martial law. "Tonight, a column of armored vehicles will be arriving in Tacloban to show the government's resolve and to stop this looting," he said today. Just yesterday, the death toll was estimated at 1,200.
"People are walking like zombies looking for food," one medical student in Leyte tells Reuters. "It's like a movie." The nation's interior minister was equally bleak, saying, " I don't know how to describe what I saw. It's horrific. It was like a tsunami." The typhoon packed winds of up to 147mph, and destroyed an estimated 70% to 80% of the structures in its path. And though weakened, Haiyan isn't done yet: The BBC notes that the storm is now churning toward Vietnam, which has evacuated 600,000 people in advance of its arrival. Meanwhile, the AP notes that Pope Francis led a silent prayer at St. Peter's Square this morning, calling for "concrete aid" for "our brothers and sisters" in the heavily Catholic Philippines.