Falling tree crushes young Hanoian to death

By Ba Do, Tat Dinh   August 29, 2019 | 05:23 am PT
One person died and another was hospitalized as heavy rain and strong winds triggered by storm Podul felled several trees in Hanoi on Thursday evening.
A man is fatally crushed by a fallen tree in Hanoi, August 29, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Huy.

A man is fatally crushed by a fallen tree in Hanoi, August 29, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Huy.

A thunderstorm at 5 p.m., right around after office hours, uprooted many trees in half an hour.

Nguyen Huu Huan, 26, died when a tree fell on him near the West Lake, the firefighting department of Tay Ho District said.

Another unidentified person was taken to hospital after a tree fell on him/her on Hoang Hoa Tham Street, also in Tay Ho.

Trees were felled on many downtown Hanoi streets, including Pham Ngoc Thach, Hao Nam, Hoang Quoc Viet and Giang Vo. Traffic in these areas was paralyzed as a result.

A tree falls on two cars in Thuy Khue Street, Hanoi August 29, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Ba Do.

A tree fell and crushed two cars on Thuy Khue Street, Hanoi, August 29, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Ba Do.

"The wind was very strong. I heard people scream and as I just ran outside, a tree fell onto my shop," said Quynh Mai, an employee of a clothing store on Pham Ngoc Thach Street, Dong Da District.

Hers is one of two clothing stores in the area on which a tree fell.

As of Thursday afternoon, Podul's eye was to the south of China's Hainan Island, and about 350 kilometers to the east of Vietnamese shores, from the central provincess of Nghe An to Quang Tri, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.

It was carrying winds of 75-90 kph.

Podul is expected to make landfall on Friday morning with wind speeds of 60-75kph, before devolving into a tropical depression within the next 36 to 48 hours.

The Hong Kong Observatory and the U.S. Navy have forecast that the storm will make landfall at around 7 a.m.

Heavy rains should be expected across the country, including Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City, until Monday, weather experts have said.

Natural disasters, mostly floods, storms and landslides, killed 181 people in Vietnam last year, left 37 others missing and caused losses of around VND20 trillion ($858 million).

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