20 dead, 16 missing as flash floods hit northern, central Vietnam

By Vo Hai   July 21, 2018 | 07:31 pm PT
20 dead, 16 missing as flash floods hit northern, central Vietnam
At least 20 people were dead and 16 still missing by Jul 21 as tropical storm Son Tinh hit the northern and central Vietnam. Photo by VnExpress/Giang A Lu
Flash floods and landslides triggered by heavy downpours have so far left 20 dead, 16 missing and 14 injured in northern and central provinces.

The northern provinces of Yen Bai and Son La and the central province of Thanh Hoa were hardest hit by the impacts of tropical storm Son Tinh, with over 100 houses collapsing and 4,000 houses getting flooded. 

Yen Bai lost the highest number of people with 10, while the other northern provinces of Son La, Phu Tho, Hoa Binh and Lao Cai lost 6 in total. Four people died in the central province of Thanh Hoa.

Over 82,000 hectares (200,000 acres) of agricultural produce has been destroyed and around 17,000 livestock killed, according to the National Disaster Response, Search and Rescue Committee. 

The committee said that 6,500 military personnel have been mobilized to assist local residents. 

Storm Son Tinh turned into a tropical depression as it made landfall in central Vietnam, but it brought heavy rainfall lasting many hours to northern and central provinces, starting Friday. 

Son Tinh is the third storm of the year to form in the East Sea, known internationally as the South China Sea. Weather forecasters expect the East Sea to churn up another five to seven storms and tropical depressions this year.

Several domestic airlines such as Vietnam Airlines and Vietjet Air announced cancellations and delays in flights to Thanh Hoa and Vinh.

Vietnam is often affected by storms in the second half of the year. Last month, at least 23 people were killed and 10 went missing after floods and landslides hit the mountainous provinces in the north.

Natural disasters including floods and tropical storms killed more than 390 people across the country last year and caused damage worth nearly VND52.2 trillion ($2.34 billion), according to official figures. 

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