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Errors in urban planning to blame for unprecedented inundation in Da Nang

Tuesday, December 11, 2018, 10:55 GMT+7
Errors in urban planning to blame for unprecedented inundation in Da Nang
A flood hit Da Nang on December 9, 2018 following a downpour. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Experts have attributed urban planning errors and excessive garbage to the severe flooding in the central Vietnamese city of Da Nang on Sunday.

A prolonged downpour throughout the day turned vast areas in the central hub into rivers, with many residents claiming such serious inundation was unprecedented.

Many streets including Ham Nghi, Phan Dang Luu, Nui Thanh, and Tong Phuoc Pho were heavily inundated, causing countless motorbikes and cars to break down.

The situation was most serious along Trung Nu Vuong Street as rainwater reached chest level.

The municipal fire department had to mobilize dozens of officers and two specialized vehicles to help residents move valuable belongings out of their submerged houses.

Rainfall between 300 and 400 millimeters was recorded in the central hub from 3:00 am to 7:00 am on Sunday, the National Center for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting said, adding that torrential rain may continue in the coming days, posing high risks of flooding.

Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Huynh Duc Tho requested the Da Nang Drainage and Wastewater Treatment Company to task its personnel with dredging local manhole covers and primary sections of the sewer system to alleviate the flooding.

Many shops are closed due to inundation in Da Nang City on December 9, 2018.
Many shops are closed due to inundation in Da Nang City on December 9, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Errors in urban planning

All outfalls across the city had worked at full force during the flooding, but that was not enough to resolve the issue, given the high volume of rainwater, a representative from the municipal Department of Construction stated.

Competent authorities also discovered a large amount of garbage at sewer entrances in inundated areas, causing water flow to be congested, the representative continued.

Mai Ma, director of the Da Nang drainage firm, admitted that the city’s drainage and wastewater treatment system can only withstand average rainfall of 100 millimeters, while the figure recorded during Sunday’s downpours were three to four times higher.

A report of the city’s urban management committee showed that many sections of the drainage network were built in different years, and thus do not function properly together.

Some pipelines also degraded, which limited the capacity of the entire system, the report highlighted.

According to Bui Huy Tri, an engineer and official of the municipal construction department, many reservoirs in city, which play important roles in the drainage network, have been filled during development of local infrastructure.

A man paddles his kayak on a flooded street in Da Nang on December 10, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre

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Duy Khang / Tuoi Tre News

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