Heavy rains turn Saigon airport to seaport

By VnExpress   August 26, 2016 | 09:53 pm PT
70 flights were affected.

Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City was submerged by rainwater from downpours on August 26, affecting as much as 70 flights arriving at the airport.

M1 taxiway at the airport came to a halt after being flooded 30 centimeters underwater by heavy rainfalls, said Pham Vu Cuong, Vice Director of Tan Son Nhat International Airport. At 8 p.m. the same day, operation was back to normal after water had been drained.

Out of the affected flights, two were cancelled and 14 were forced to land at nearby airports. Four international flights had to land at airports in Cambodia and Thailand.


The airport was submerged in 30cm of water. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Bang

This is not the first time heavy rainfall halted operations at Vietnam’s biggest airport. On October 9, 2015, 20-centimeter inundation menaced the power station, forcing the airport to a temporary shut down. The repeated inundation was allegedly due to the nearby A41 drainage ditch, which had been many times requested to be dredged but to no avail, said Cuong.

Last month, the city pledged to spend $16 million to save Tan Son Nhat Airport from such drowning incidents. 

In central Saigon, downpours during rush hours also resulted in heavy congestion. At some places, the water spilled into houses and pushed garbage floating around.

Many couldn't start their motorbike engines after spark plugs got wet. Underground parking lots became unintended pools.


Inundation in parking lots in Thu Duc District. Photo by M.T

Hanoi, on August 24, also went through heavy inundation as a result of Typhoon Dianmu, the third tropical storm to hit Vietnam this year.

Related news:

HCMC prepares to tackle floods, heavy rains threaten airport

HCM City pumps $450 million into flood prevention project

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