Matmo takes a wrecking ball to houses in central Vietnam

By Huu Khoa   November 2, 2019 | 02:00 am PT
Hundreds of residents in a poor Binh Dinh district were left homeless in the aftermath of storm Matmo.
The house of a local woman identified Nguyen Thi My in Tuy Phuoc District was buried in the rubble.The district is one of the localities suffering from the heaviest damage in the aftermath of storm Matmo which devolved into a tropical depression Thursday morning after making landfall in in the south central provinces of Binh Dinh and Phu Yen on Wednesday night.Local authorities in Tuy Phuoc District, which is considered the central region’s hardest hit area by annual tropical storms reported 99 houses were collapsed while 224 others were unroofed and damaged after the storm Matmo ravaged the central province. 

The house of Nguyen Thi My of Tuy Phuoc District lost its roof and suffered other damage in the storm. Tuy Phuoc was among the worst-hit localities as storm Matmo made landfall in the south central provinces of Binh Dinh and Phu Yen Wednesday night. 

District authorities have reported 99 collapsed houses and 224 others unroofed or otherwise damaged.

Seeing the house weak, before the storm came, my son took our couple to his house to take a temporary shelter. The next morning, I returned home and did not recognize it anymore. It was like being bombed by a plane. My said with tears in her eyes.

"Because our house was not so strong, my son took us to his house to take shelter during the storm. The next morning, I returned home and could not see it anymore. It was like being bombed by a plane," said a tearful My.


About a kilometer away, Tran Thanh Tuan’s house had met the same fate.

"When the storm hit, despite staying in a neighbor's house, my whole family did not dare to sleep because of the strong winds and the flooding," said Tuan as he laid out sedge mats to dry amidst the rubble of his house.


"Before the storm came, I tried to strengthen the house with ropes and moved all belongings, including furniture out of the house but strong winds destroyed it," Tuan said.


A pillow impaled on a plank in the middle of the rubble. 


Pham Thi Lien, 49, hopes her mattress dries in the sun. Her house was unroofed Friday afternoon. "Over the past two days, my family has to live in the open air and eat out due to electricity outages since Wednesday," said Lien.


Pham Thanh Thai, 65, clears up the debris left after the storm. "The collapsed house can be rebuilt but the important thing is that life is safe."

No casualties have been reported in the province so far.


A dog stands on the rubble. 

Heavy rains and flash floods triggered by storm Matmo left two people dead and another missing, according to the Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control.

Up to 900,000 households in the central region lost power following the storm.

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