A tropical depression has entered the East Vietnam Sea and is forecast to evolve into a storm on Thursday, threatening provinces in the south-central region.
The low-pressure system first formed in a maritime area east of the Philippines around Monday and has since been traveling westward.
It reached the East Vietnam Sea early Thursday morning, according to the National Center for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting.
As of 7:00 am on the same day, the tropical depression was located about 300 kilometers southeast of Song Tu Tay Island in Vietnam's Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago.
Average wind speeds were recorded at 50 to 60km per hour with gusts at up to 88km an hour.
It is likely to gather enough strength to become a tropical storm within the next 12 hours.
In the next 12 to 24 hours, the storm, which will be the ninth typhoon to hit Vietnam this year, is forecast to travel northwest as it continues to amass strength.
|Rescuers look for missing victims after landslides in Nha Trang City, Khanh Hoa Province, November 20, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre|
By 7:00 am on Friday, it is expected to reach within 100 kilometers west of Song Tu Tay Island, packing winds of 60 to 90km per hour and squalls at about 130km an hour.
The storm will head toward the mainland and reach within 160 kilometers of the south-central Vietnam coast on Saturday morning, with wind speeds increasing to between 75 and 100km per hour.
According to Le Dinh Quyet, an official from the southern weather station, chances are that the storm will directly affect provinces from Ninh Thuan to Khanh Hoa in south-central Vietnam, bringing heavy downpours to the region.
Le Huu Tho, chairman of the People’s Committee in Nha Tang City, Khanh Hoa Province, confirmed on Tuesday they were trying to evacuate about 400 households at 71 locations susceptible to flashfloods and landslides.
At least 18 people in Nha Trang were killed after downpours brought about by storm Toraji, Vietnam’s eighth storm this year, triggered serious landslides in multiple residential areas across the city last weekend.