Heavy rains drown disaster-hit central Vietnam

By Quang Ha   October 31, 2016 | 01:15 am PT
Heavy rains drown disaster-hit central Vietnam
A market in Quang Binh Province is under water. Photo by VnExpress/Phong Duong
Just as people were starting to recover from the last floods, they're knee-deep in water again.

Non-stop rain over the past two days has flooded around 500 houses in the central province of Quang Binh, scuppering the efforts nearly a hundred thousand families in the area have been making to recover from the severe flooding that hit two weeks ago.

Around 350 houses in Van Hoa Commune in Tuyen Hoa District were up to a meter in water on Monday, and more than 100 houses in the nearby Chau Hoa Commune were also hit.

Rainfall of between 150 and 220mm has swollen the Gianh River that surrounds the communes, and many students had to stay at home on Monday after a national highway flooded.

Phan Huy Hoang, chairman of Chau Hoa, said the rainfall was as heavy as the dounpours that caused severe flooding in the province two weeks ago.

On October 13, a low tropical pressure system made landfall in Quang Binh and triggered torrential rains of up to 700mm that submerged 92,000 houses in the province by up to three meters. At least 22 people died in the disaster, described by many as the worst to ever hit the province, which is among the poorest in Vietnam.

“The river is rising,” Hoang said on Monday. “People here will be very miserable.”

In neighboring Ha Tinh Province, heavy rain plus water discharged from the Ho Ho hydropower dam have also isolated many communes in the low-lying Huong Khe District.

Ha Tinh officials said that water released from the dam had added to their woes, resulting in nine deaths and leaving 5,000 houses under water two weeks ago. No action has been taken against the dam's investors.

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