Central Vietnam braces for storm Kompasu

By Duc Hung, Nguyen Hai, Hoang Tao   October 13, 2021 | 03:38 am PT
The central region is making concerted efforts to mitigate the impacts of storm Kompasu, bringing boats ashore, strengthening sea embankments, and protecting their fish ponds.

Border guards help fishermen in Ky An Town, Ha Tinh Province bring their boats ashore.
The province announced a sea ban Tuesday and more than 2,000 vessels have been brought to shelter. Storm Kompasu is expected to enter the Gulf of Tonkin between late Wednesday night and early Thursday morning before making landfall in central Vietnam. The Ha Tinh hydro-meteorological station said that from Wednesday noon until Friday, the province is likely to experience heavy downpours and strong winds, with rainfall of 200-300 mm going up to 350 mm at some places.
Local authorities have warned of flash floods and landslides in mountainous areas and flooding in riverside areas.


A couple in Thach Ha Commune, Ha Tinh Town move their fish cages on the Ho Do River into ponds. Sudden changes in the water environment because of heavy rain can prove fatal to the fish.
Over the past two days, many households in the commune who raise fish in cages on the river have moved them out. The commune has more than 30 households raising fish in about 100 cages. "Last year, our family lost tens of millions of dong (thousands of dollars) after floods killed 100 kilos of our pomfret fish," said one farmer.


Workers at a fishing cooperative in Ho Do Commune in Ha Tinh’s Loc Ha District prepare a net to cover a pond and protect their fish against flood damage.


Since Tuesday night, it has started to rain heavily in Loc Ha District and many restaurants selling seafood along Xuan Hai Beach have had to close.
"My restaurant gets flooded every time it rains. Since yesterday, we have had to move all furniture and food to a higher place. I really hope that the storm will disappear in the sea or weaken into a tropical depression before making landfall. This year, the pandemic has already made it hard to do business and now with the storms and floods, we have to expect heavy losses," said Pham Ba Nam, 50.


A group of men drop rocks to strengthen the shoreline in Quang Phuc Commune, Dong Hoi Town, Quang Binh Province.
The province has also ordered a sea ban and almost all its seafaring vessels had taken shelter by Wednesday.


An excavator speeds up work to reinforce the embankment at a local beach. At 4 p.m. Wednesday, the storm was 490 km away from Thanh Hoa, 495 km away from Nghe An and 475 km away from Ha Tinh with wind speeds of 90-100 kph. It was expected to move west at the speed of 25-30 kph over the next three hours.
The storm then would enter the southern sea regions of the Gulf of Tonkin and may gradually weaken, said the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.
By 10 a.m. Thursday, it would be located above the sea areas off provinces from Thanh Hoa to Quang Binh with a maximum wind speed of 75 kph. Within the next 24 hours, the storm would maintain its direction and speed, making landfall between Thanh Hoa and Quang Binh and devolve into a tropical depression, weather experts predict.


Nguyen Xuan Phong, 62, of Dong Hoi Town, rented a crane to take his boat ashore from the Nhat Le River. Phong, who catches squid, said he has not gone fishing since July because of the pandemic and now, with the storm coming, he had to spend VND1 million in moving the boat to shelter.


Nguyen Thi Man, 52, folds a fish trap. Every night, she and her husband would lay the trap along the Nhat Le River in Quang Binh and collect the fish in the morning for sale.


Senior Lieutenant Tran Quang Vinh (R) works on a rescue ship of the Nghe An Border Guard.
Home to 3,300 fishing boats and 17,000 fishers, Nghe An Province issued a sea ban last Sunday as storm Kompasu approached.
On Tuesday, disaster management authorities made plans to evacuate 65,000 families with 250,000 members in central Vietnam as storm Kompasu threatened to make landfall with 75-90 kph winds. The storm is the eighth one to enter Vietnam's waters so far this year. Local reports say that it has left at least 11 people dead and seven missing in the Philippines as of Wednesday.

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