Storm Rai weakens into tropical depression

By Huu Nguyen   December 20, 2021 | 07:53 pm PT
Storm Rai weakens into tropical depression
Strong waves as an impact of storm Rai along the Sa Huynh Beach in Quang Ngai Province, central Vietnam, December 18, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Phong Linh
After moving to the north of Vietnam's Paracel Islands, Rai, once a super typhoon, has turned into a tropical depression.

According to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting, the center of the depression lay 180 km south of China’s Hainan Island at 10 p.m. Monday with the strongest wind speed measured at 40-50 kph.

It is forecast to continue moving north-east at 20 kph and keep weakening.

Rai, the ninth storm in the South China Sea this year, was a super typhoon when it hit the Philippines before it started to weaken.

But on Sunday it intensified again into a super typhoon, belying forecasts it would continue to weaken as it moved closer to the Vietnamese coast.

It sank five fishing vessels off Vietnam's south-central Binh Thuan Province on Sunday, killing one fisherman. It also caused damage worth at least VND200 billion ($8.7 million) to seafood farms off Khanh Hoa Province.

In the Philippines, the death toll from the typhoon had climbed to at least 375 by the end of Monday, according to AFP.

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