THE strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year left at least six people dead, authorities said Monday.

Typhoon “Karding” (international name: “Noru”) toppled trees, knocked out power and flooded low-lying communities as it swept across Luzon on Sunday and Monday.

“We were ready for all of this,” President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. told a briefing with disaster agencies Monday. “You might think that we overdid it. There is no such thing as overkill when it comes to disasters.”

Five rescuers were killed after they were sent to help flooded residents in San Miguel town in Bulacan.

LtCol. Romualdo Andres, San Miguel chief of police, said the rescuers were wading through floodwaters when a wall beside them collapsed, sending them into the fast current.

An elderly man died after he was hit by a landslide in Burdeos municipality on the Polillo Islands, part of Quezon province, where the storm made landfall, said Garner Jimenez from the local civil defense office.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) on Monday said it was confirming reports that six fishermen in Camarines Norte were missing after they sailed into stormy seas.

The Civil Defense Bicol quoted the Camarines Norte Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office as saying that the fishermen were from the town of Mercedes.

Karding smashed into Luzon on Sunday after an unprecedented “explosive intensification” in wind speeds, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) said earlier.

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It made landfall near Polillo before weakening to a typhoon as it crossed a mountain range, coconut plantations and rice fields.

Nearly 75,000 people were evacuated from their homes before the storm hit, as Pagasa warned heavy rain could cause “serious flooding” in vulnerable areas, trigger landslides and destroy crops.

But on Monday there was no sign of the widespread devastation many had feared, as the storm moved over the South China Sea toward Vietnam.

Aerial footage taken during Marcos’ inspection flight over Central Luzon showed rivers that were swollen or had burst their banks and patches of farmland under water.