Rescue and repair work begins as waters ebb

Quang Dien District of Thua Thien-Hue Province still under water Sunday.

Quang Dien District of Thua Thien-Hue Province still under water Sunday.

Work began Sunday on repairing damage and rescuing victims in flood-hit central provinces as water levels began to recede.

The toll had risen from five on Friday to at least 10 dead or missing, local authorities said.

Thousands of hectares of crops have been destroyed, hundreds of cattle swept away, river banks eroded, and infrastructure damaged in the central provinces that are bearing the brunt of a spate of floods since early this month.

Many offshore seafaring vessels have also gone missing due to rough seas and strong winds, provincial coast guards reported, adding they were struggling to establish their whereabouts.

People in Thua Thien-Hue’s Phu Loc District repair houses damaged by the floods.

People in Thua Thien-Hue’s Phu Loc District repair houses damaged by the floods.

Though the waters have receded, meteorological experts Sunday warned flood-prone provinces to remain vigilant against fresh floods as the water levels still remained at high emergency level.

They were also told to keep a close eye on the weather in forthcoming days.

Most affected areas have had central or provincial officials personally lead repair work. Deputy Prime Minister

Hoang Trung Hai and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Cao Duc Phat were in Thua Thien-Hue Province Sunday to oversee progress on local reservoirs and hydropower projects.

Quang Nam Province was the worst-hit by the latest round of flooding. At least seven people have been reported dead or missing, more than 12,000 houses are submerged, and material losses are estimated at around VND22 billion (US$1.3 million).

Over 2,000 hectares of crops and shrimp ponds have been destroyed, hundreds of heads of cattle swept away, and a long stretch of dikes have burst their banks and have been seriously eroded.

The floods have also taken a heavy toll on local infrastructure, collapsing bridges and electricity poles, cutting off access to many districts in the province.

Provincial officials, along with military personnel, were dispatched Sunday to flood-ravaged areas to monitor work of reinforcing houses and bringing fishing vessels inshore.

Local authorities have prohibited residents from entering areas susceptible to floods.

A task force from the government and the Steering Committee for Flood Control and Prevention will reach the province today to oversee repair and rehabilitation work.

Elsewhere, the dike system in Thua Thien-Hue Province has suffered serious damage, and many local houses have lost their roofs to whirlwinds. The floods have also shut down many schools.

Deputy PM Hai and Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Phat paid a visit Sunday to the Binh Dien hydropower project and the Ta Trach reservoir respectively to ensure they were not affected by the floods.

In Quang Ngai Province, one person died, five were injured and 100 houses damaged by the floods, according to authorities.

The floods also destroyed a 7,200-meter stretch of traffic routes and inundated around 1,000 hectares of crops in the province.

In Quang Tri Province, traffic linking Dakrong District to Thua Thien-Hue Province resumed Sunday after being severed by heavy floods for several days.

Four fishermen stranded offshore were also rescued Sunday.

The central region had been hit hard earlier this month by Storm Mekkhala which left 21 dead or missing.

Reported by Thanh Nien staff

Rescue and repair work begins as waters ebb – Thanh Nien Daily

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