Nightly News   |  November 12, 2013

Survivors struggle to leave Philippines as food, water disappears

The city of Tacloban is in ruins, and island after island in the Philippines has been torn apart. Now, survivors are trying to rebuild their lives -- but the misery continues. NBC’s Angus Walker reports.

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>>> good evening. as you're about to hear, a u.s.

marine general said today the

people of the philippines don't

have a week to wait. some don't even have days to

spare.

it underscores the monumental

effort underway tonight to get

help there despite huge

obstacles and widespread

devastation. take just the one area we have

been focusing on for the last 24

hours, tacloban , a city of

200,000 people.

this is what is left of the

airport, the tower is out of

commission. there is no radar, or air stairs

to pull up to the planes.

and air strips are too short to

e accommodate jets, and that

limits the numbers of flights in

and out. and this is what is left of the

city, water is the key tosurvival and the search for it

is desperate.

a second weather system has come

along and again drenched the

area with heavy rains.

the feared death toll has been

downgraded, but of course there

is no way to know for sure.

it's where we begin our

reporting tonight before we hear

from dr. nancy snyderman on the

medical effort, we begin with

angus walker in tacloban .

>> Reporter: the true extent of

the devastation is now becomingclear.

island after island, villageafter coastal village torn

apart.

this city of tacloban is in

ruins.

at the airport, they're fighting

for a chance to escape.

cries of desperation fill the

air.

>> we need help, we need food,

we need water.

for the children.

>> Reporter: overwhelmed andtraumatized, their only option

now is to get out. the typhoon has taken everything

from them.

>> everything is gone, ourhouses, everything.

there's nothing to eat.

Reporter: in the ruins, the

downpour today.

the survivors in tacloban are

now trying to rebuild their

lives, but the misery goes on.

Reporter: what's happening to

my country?

we have no food.

help is not coming, she says.

people here have become

scavengers, desperate for foodand water.

even the youngest are snatching

what they can.

it's called bliss, the name of a

housing project for people who

had lost their homes in past

typhoons. this time it was no safe haven.

bliss is made up of a maze of

narrow alleyways, and when the

typhoon struck, it filled with

water within seconds to above

roof heights.

and yet most survived, quickly

climbing high enough to escape.

some clearly happy just to bealive.

but living is hard.

long lines for empty shelves,

medicines are rationed.

as the evening approaches,

barricades are manned, with the

military.

the people of tacloban fend for

themselves as many struggle to

get out.

some do find space on adeparting plane and make it to

manila, hundreds of miles and a

world away.

while at that same manila

airport, cargo planes are loaded

with supplies. >> there are people suffering

tonight as it rains on them with

a second tropical storm and we

need to mobilize tonight.

>> Reporter: the need is getting

greater by the hour.

an angus walker for nbc news in

tacloban , the philippines.