Storm Noul weakens into tropical depression after making landfall

By Staff reporters   September 17, 2020 | 08:12 pm PT
Storm Noul weakens into tropical depression after making landfall
The roof of a primary school in Thua Thien-Hue Province has been blown away as Storm Noul makes landfall, September 18, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Dac Thanh.
Storm Noul weakened into a tropical depression an hour after making landfall in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue and its neighbor Quang Tri Friday morning.

As of 11 a.m., the tropical depression’s center was over Thua Thien Hue and Quang Tri with maximum wind speed of 60 kph, the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting said. The depression is forecast to move west in the next 12 hours at a speed of 25 kph before weakening into a low pressure zone over central Laos.

On Friday afternoon, coastal provinces like Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien-Hue, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An and Ha Tinh should expect heavy winds. Localities from Quang Binh, home to the world’s largest Son Doong Cave, to Nghe An would be battered by heavy rains with rainfall ranging from 100 to 150 mm. From Friday night to Sunday, the northern delta including Hanoi could receive rainfall of up to 150 mm a day.

Around half an hour before the storm made landfall on the central coast at 10 a.m. with maximum wind speed of 90 kph, strong winds swept through Huong Tra Town in Thua Thien-Hue Province, home to the popular tourist town Hue, damaging hundreds of casuarina trees in a coastal protection forest. Many houses' roofs were blown away.

In downtown Hue, many trees and electric poles were felled. Many areas in Thua Thien Hue Province have experienced power outage.

In nearby Ha Tinh Province, around 60 houses lost their roofs to strong winds and many vegetable and fruit crops were damaged.

Central localities including Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Tri and Da Nang have been hit by torrential downpours since Thursday night.

Since Thursday night, central provinces have been battered by heavy rains with rainfall of 80 and 260 mm in 24 hours, with Cham Islands in Quang Nam (260 mm) and Da Nang City (210 mm). Rainfall of 180 mm a day is considered heavy.

Strong winds as Storm Noul makes landfall in Cua Viet Town, Gio Linh District in Quang Tri Province at 10 a.m. on September 18, 2020. Video by Hoang Tao.

The storm is moving towards west-northwest with a speed of 25 kph, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.

Vietnamese carriers have canceled several dozen flights to and from Da Nang, Hue and Quang Nam on Friday.

Due to the impact of Storm Noul, northern and central localities should expect heavy rains of up to 300 mm a day in the coming days. Rainfall of 180 mm a day is considered heavy.

Storm Noul is the fifth formed this year in the East Sea, known internationally as the South China Sea.

The year’s fourth storm, Higos, hit last month, making landfall in China.

The East Sea could see 11-13 storms and tropical depressions this year, half of them affecting the country, meteorologists have warned.

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