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Giant storm Molave barrels down on central Vietnam

By Staff reporters   October 27, 2020 | 06:19 pm PT
Giant storm Molave barrels down on central Vietnam
A tree is uprooted on a street in Tuy Hoa Town, Phu Yen, following strong winds caused by storm Molave on October 28, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Xuan Ngoc.
Molave, the most powerful storm in the last 20 years, approached Vietnam’s central coast Wednesday morning, bringing heavy rains and strong winds.

At 8 a.m. its eye was only around 195 kilometers from the central city of Da Nang.

It packs winds of 135 kph, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.

It is projected to move west at 25 kph and make landfall over Quang Ngai, Quang Nam and Binh Dinh provinces by Wednesday afternoon.

Downpours began in Da Nang in the early hours and strong winds uprooted trees.

The city People’s Committee had warned people not to leave their houses after 8 p.m. on Tuesday and not go for work on Wednesday.

Tam Ky Town in Quang Nam Province next to Da Nang has experienced strong winds and power outages. On Tran Nguyen Han Street, many trees were uprooted and billboards were knocked down.

In Quang Ngai Province, many areas in Binh Son District were hit by strong winds from 7 a.m.

Strong winds and rains pour down on an almost empty road in Binh Son District, Quang Ngai, at 7 a.m. October 27, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.

Strong winds and rains pour down on an almost empty road in Binh Son District, Quang Ngai, at 7 a.m. October 28, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.

Along the coast, there were waves as high as five meters.

Since early morning Tuy Hoa, the capital of Phu Yen Province, has been hit by torrential downpours and strong winds, which uprooted trees in many places. Shops are closed and streets deserted.

Many parts of Tuy Hoa saw power cuts.

Since Tuesday authorities in Da Nang and six neighbor provinces have evacuated 450,000 people.

They have shut down public beaches and banned swimming in the sea.

Strong winds along the coast in Quy Nhon, Binh Dinh Province, October 28, 2020. Video by VnExpress/Tuan Viet.

The national forecast center, which described Molave as the most powerful storm to hit Vietnam in the past 20 years, has warned it is especially dangerous because of its swiftness, intensity and size.

Before entering the East Sea, it had wreaked havoc in the Philippines, killing at least three people and leaving dozens missing, the country’s National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said on Tuesday.

Natural disasters, mostly floods and landslides triggered by storms and heavy rains, killed 132 people and injured 207 in Vietnam last year.

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