Hundreds dispatched to aid reported hydropower plant landslide victims

By Vo Thanh   October 13, 2020 | 01:14 pm GMT+7
Hundreds dispatched to aid reported hydropower plant landslide victims
A team of soldiers is dispatched to the Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant site in Thua Thien-Hue Province in central Vietnam for a potential rescue operation, October 13, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Vo Thanh.

Over 100 people have been dispatched to a commune in north-central Thua Thien-Hue Province to verify whether a landslide near a hydropower plant buried over 10 workers.

The rescue team, comprised of soldiers, police officers and medics, was dispatched to Phong Xuan Commune, Phong Dien District on Tuesday morning, said Phan Ngoc Tho, provincial chairman.

On Monday, the provincial Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention, Control and Rescue received a phone call stating a team of over 10 workers had been buried under a landslide at a Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant construction site. The informant confirmed to have scaled a hill in order to reach authorities telephonically. The phone number was reported out of service later, Tho said.

The Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant is deep within the jungle, around 30 km from Phong Xuan, said Tran Van Toan, deputy chairman of Phong Xuan Commune.

Forty other workers at the plant, including three Indians, had safely moved to the nearby Rao Trang 4 power plant, which has been cut off due to landslides and flooding, and only has enough food left for one day.

Two rescue teams had already been dispatched to the Rao Trang 3 site Monday night, though the second crew had to return due to unfavorable weather conditions and many roads being flooded. Authorities have yet to provide any information on the first team’s progress.

Authorities erect signs to warn of heavily flooded roads leading into the Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant site in Thua Thien-Hue Province, October 13, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Dac Thanh.

Signs warn of heavily flooded roads leading to the Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant site in Thua Thien-Hue Province, October 13, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Dac Thanh.

Since last week, central Vietnam has been bombarded by rains, floods and landslides after a cold spell came in contact with tropical turbulence, killing at least 29 people, leaving 12 missing, and inundating over 130,000 houses.

As of Tuesday, Thua Thien-Hue has reported six deaths, with thousands of homes in the area submerged underwater. Provincial authorities have asked for emergency supplies amid the crisis, including food, medicine, and rescue gear.

 
 
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