Five dead as flashfloods, landslides hit northern Vietnam

By Gia Chinh   April 25, 2020 | 06:07 am PT
Five dead as flashfloods, landslides hit northern Vietnam
Houses in Ban Lang Village in Lai Chau Province are damaged by flooding following heavy rains, April 2020. Photo courtesy of Lai Chau's Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Heavy floods and landslides triggered by torrential rains in northern Vietnam over the past three days have left five dead and over 10,300 houses damaged.

From April 22 to 24, a cold spell combined with the convergence of high winds caused heavy rain in the northern mountainous region, with rainfall in many areas of up to 130 mm a day.

Lai Chau Province reported two deaths while Ha Giang, Son La and Yen Bai reported one death each, according to the Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control.

Twenty-five others have been injured and some are still missing, the committee said.

The total damage so far is estimated at VND130 billion ($5.5 million), with 10,330 houses damaged and over 3,000 hectares of rice and other crops destroyed.

Dang Van Chau, director of Lai Chau’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said heavy rains were battering the province as of Saturday morning. Lai Chau has issued flash flood and landslide warnings to all areas, and residents of some houses in vulnerable locations haver been evacuated to safer areas.

The National Center for Hydrometeorological Forecasting said northern mountainous provinces will experience heavy rains until Sunday. Lai Chau, Dien Bien and Lao Cai provinces are at high risk of flashfloods and landslides, it said.

Natural disasters, mostly floods and landslides, killed 133 people in Vietnam last year and caused losses worth around VND7 trillion ($302.6 million), according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

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