22 killed in Vietnam floods

HANOI – FLOODS in central Vietnam have killed at least 22 people after a storm lashed the region last week, also leaving 10 fishermen missing in the South China Sea, emergency services officials said on Monday.

Soldiers were deployed to flood areas to search for victims while rescue workers were trying to reach people stranded after 18,000 buildings were damaged or submerged across five central provinces, officials said.

The deaths were reported in the provinces of Nghe An, Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Tri, Quang Nam and Quang Ngai, said Nguyen The Hung of the National Flood and Storm Control Committee in the capital Hanoi.

‘Authorities and local residents have been asked to take preventative measures against further floods and landslides,’ said Nguyen Nghia Hieu, director of Nghe An’s flood control department.

He said rains had abated but water levels in some rivers were still rising.

Vietnam – with a 3,200-kilometre coastline – suffers from frequent floods and storms which claim hundreds of lives every year, mostly in the typhoon season between July and November.

Nine people died when Typhoon Mekkhala hit central Vietnam last month.

Because of its exposure to the South China Sea and its two low-lying and densely populated river deltas, Vietnam is among the countries most at risk from climate change and rising sea levels, the World Bank has warned. — AFP



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