Fallen branch slams shops, injures woman following downpour in Saigon

By Son Hoa   July 8, 2017 | 10:21 am GMT+7

Trees take tolls almost any time it pours in the city, as experts blame urbanization for squeezing their environment.

A 10-meter branch fell off and smashed onto the roofs and billboards of two shops in downtown Ho Chi Minh City on Friday, as a heavy rain was ceasing.

The hollow branch, of around 30 centimeters in diameter, fell at around 2:30 p.m. on the sportswear street Huyen Tran Cong Chua in District 1 and caused slight injuries to one of the shopowners.

An official said he will ask the public company in charge of trees on the city streets to check all of them carefully to make sure similar incidents will not recur.

Trees are uprooted and fall regularly during the monsoon season in the city, as experts blame it on urban development, with houses suffocating the trees and underground projects taking up their soil and water.

Last Sunday, a 10-meter tall tree was uprooted in Thu Duc District, a day before another fallen tree smashed a parked car in District 1.

The city’s transport department listed over 800 incidents of uprooted trees and fallen branches in 2016, including two incidents that killed a 60-year-old woman and a 25-year-old man in August.