Viet Nam News
QUẢNG NAM — Hundreds of fishing vessels were forced to stay ashore in the province’s Hội An City for the past six days due to sedimentation of the estuary, which blocked entry.
Nguyễn Thế Hùng, vice chairman of Hội An City, said serious sedimentation of Cửa Đại took place when a large amount of sand swept into the estuary from upstream following the floods.
Võ Bá Lại, a fisherman, told Công An Nhân Dân (People’s Police) newspaper that his family’s fishing boats, with capacity of 140CV and 420 CV, couldn’t go out into the sea for the past three days, adding that thousands of other vessels were in a similar situation.
“We don’t know what else to do but wait for the competent agency to reopen the route,” he said.
“I have never seen such huge sedimentation at the Cửa Đại Estuary despite engaging in the job for many years. It’s like the exit of a house is completely blocked,” Cao Văn Mua, a local fisherman, said.
Cửa Đại Estuary is a major sea route for hundreds of ships from the districts of Duy Xuyên, Thăng Bình, Điện Bàn Township and Hội An City.
Normally, the water is 4.5-5m deep at the estuary, allowing boats with capacity of over 600CV (Constant Velocity) to enter and exit, but, currently, it was 1.2-1.5m, Mua said.
The water level might even be as low as 0.5m when the tide was out, he said.
Serious sedimentation of Cửa Đại did not only affect the lives of fishermen who relied on fishing, but also left an impact on tourism activities on Cù Lao Chàm Island. The transportation of tourists, locals and goods from the mainland to the island was disrupted.
Hùng said a working group has been sent to examine the sedimentation and a report on the incident has been submitted to the provincial authority.
The city authorities have proposed that the provincial authority carry out urgent dredging work at Cửa Đại’s entry point.
Lê Công Sỹ, deputy chairman of Cửa Đại Ward’s People’ Committee, said this was not the first time the area faced this situation. Following the flood and typhoon in late 2013, the Cửa Đại Beach Estuary suffered from serious sedimentation which preventing fishing boats from entering and exiting the area and caused difficulties for fishermen in Hội An and neighbouring areas.
At that time, the Việt Nam Inland Waterway Administration and the provincial authorities had implemented dredging work at the estuary so that vessels could be back to normal operation. — VNS