Facebook activated its “Safety Check” function on Friday for the first time in Vietnam as the northern part of the country was hit by Tropical Storm Dianmu.
The feature, allowing people to tell their Facebook friends if they are safe during a crisis or disaster, was opened to users of the world’s largest social network based in Hanoi.
The decision to mark Hanoi as the only locality affected may surprise some people, as Dianmu, the third storm to hit Vietnam this year, made landfall yesterday’s afternoon in Hai Phong City and Thai Binh Province, both located in northern Vietnam.
Hanoi was affected with strong winds and lashing rains, which eventually injured three people and damaged some houses.
Vietnamese Facebook users were quite surprised to see the Safety Check turned on for them, and few people actually marked themselves as safe.
Tropical Storm Dianmu started weakening at 7:00 pm on Friday, and eventually dissipated en route to the northern mountainous later the same day, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.
However, severe rainfall as high as 200 millimeters, flash floods, and landslides are highly anticipated in northern mountainous areas this weekend, the center warned.
The Safety Check, first introduced in October 2014, allows Facebook users to spread the word that they are safe in wake of a natural disaster or a crisis, and allows searches for those who might be in the affected area.