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Vietnamese province evacuates 150 households as dam failure looms large

Tuesday, December 11, 2018, 11:51 GMT+7
Vietnamese province evacuates 150 households as dam failure looms large
A house is seen submerged in floodwater in Binh Dinh, south-central Vietnam, December 10, 2018. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Authorities in the south-central Vietnamese province of Binh Dinh on Monday forced evacuation for nearly 150 households in My Chanh Commune of Phu My District, as a local dam is expected to fail due to serious flooding affecting the area.

Recent flooding from nearby La Tinh River is threatening an already fragile dam on Can river, according to Phu My chairman Nguyen Van Dung.

Dung said authorities have immediately announced the mandatory evacuation “in light of past experience.”

The chairman elaborated that in 2016, a flood resulted in a dam failure and wreaked havoc on dozens of households as it swept in to the mainland.

“This time seems none the wiser, so evacuation is a must,” he affirmed.


Pham Thai Binh, chairman of My Chanh Commune, also inputted that members of the local military unit and youth union had reinforced Can river dam with a sandbag barrier measuring 50m wide and 0.5m high.

However, whirlpools on Monday morning immediately broke a ten-meter section of the sandbag barrier, allowing floodwater to reach My Chanh residential area, leaving one house completely submerged and threatened the likelihood of 500 others.

Twenty-four locals comprised of the elderly, women with child, and children have been led to safety at the commune administration’s headquarters.

Another 140 households have also been encouraged to temporarily leave their houses for higher ground.

The local artillery brigade 572 has thoroughly seen to the welfare of the citizens by leashing its combat vehicles and personnel to provide relief, assist the evacuation efforts, and station on alert abound the affected vicinity.


Devastating outcome

According to Binh Dinh hydro – meteorological forecasting center, while the flood, which receded later on Monday, only lingered for two days, its destructive power was disastrous.

The latest statistics released on Monday night showed that 5,000 houses throughout Binh Dinh were flooded, while five houses collapsed completely in the disaster. By Tuesday morning, 2,000 of these houses remained submerged in floodwater.

Nearly 7,000 hectares of rice crops, and 370 hectares of other produce farms were destroyed.

Three sections of the national railway fell victim to landslides on Sunday, and the rail service passing here was not restored until Monday afternoon.

More than 238,000 students of all grades across Binh Dinh were given a day off on Monday for safety reasons.

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Duy Khoi / Tuoi Tre News Contributor


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