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Thứ Sáu, 24 tháng 6, 2011

Storm Haima batters North Vietnam, 4 dead

A house collapsed by a whirlwind in Hai Phong yesterday
Photo: Tuoi Tre


Tropical storm Haima cut a swathe through three northern and north-central Vietnamese provinces and cities yesterday, killing at least four people, leaving three others missing, and injuring hundreds of others.

The storm, which swept in south from China into the Gulf of Tonkin, brought strong winds at around 5:40 pm yesterday to Hai Phong, causing severe damage to life and property.

Three people died while 200 others were injured, 59 seriously. Rescuers took 32 victims to hospital.

Among the dead were Le Thi Vui, 26, who had been eight months pregnant, and Nhu Van Thuc, 54, who died after being struck by lightning while harvesting rice.

Eighteen houses and 10 classrooms in two schools were destroyed, 859 other houses lost their roofs.

Some older residents said they had never witnessed such a storm in their lives.

Colonel Pham Van Dien, commander of the Navy Zone 1, sent 61 men to An Lu to help clear debris and repair houses.

Representatives of the city people’s and party committees visited the victims in hospitals and gave each of them VND5 million (US$245).

In Yen Bai province further north, downpours that began on the night of June 22 in Mu Can Chai District caused flooding in Sua Long stream that washed away four men – Thao A Trong, Thao A Gu, Thao A Giang, and Giang A Lenh

The water level continued to rise, making it difficult for rescuers to search for the victims, a district official said.

At 3:30 pm Lenh’s body was found in a commune seven kilometers downstream. Rescuers are continuing their search for the other three.

Authorities gave VND3 million to Lenh’ family.

Nghe An: rail, road blocked

In Nghe An Province’s Quynh Luu District, at around 5 pm yesterday, a thunderstorm blew off the roofs of dozens of houses. It also pulled down many electric poles, causing a blackout until 11 pm. 

In Quynh Hoa District, squalls uprooted dozens of eucalyptus trees that fell on a section of the Thong Nhat railway. 

With a train scheduled to arrive soon after, the chief of the Cau Giat town station mobilized staff to saw off and clear the fallen trees.

Many trees also fell on National Highway 1A, blocking traffic.

Haima to weaken into depression
At 4 am this morning tropical storm Haima lay centered 100 km southeast off Mong Cai town in Quang Ninh Province, the Hydro-meteorological Forecasting Center said. 

It packed winds of up to force 8, or 62-74 km per hour, and was moving west-south west at 10 km per hour.

It is causing winds of force 6-7, rough seas, and thunderstorms.

The coast between Quang Ninh and Ninh Binh Provinces is experiencing winds of force 6-7.

By 4 pm today the storm is forecast to continue moving west-south west at 10 km per hour to a location 60 km southeast of Quang Ninh-Hai Phong and begin to weaken into a tropical depression. 

The storm, together with the seasonal southwest monsoon, will cause strong winds and rough seas in the middle and southern parts of the East Sea, including off Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracel) Islands and the region between Binh Thuan and Ca Mau Provinces.

Read more at www.tuoitrenews.vn

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