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Cleanup after Mirinae is ongoing

Update: July, 30/2016 - 11:14
Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has asked ministries and agencies to promptly work on the aftermath of storm Mirinae that hit northern provinces from midnight of Wednesday. — Photo dantri.com.vn

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has asked ministries and agencies to promptly work on the aftermath of storm Mirinae that hit northern provinces from midnight of Wednesday.

Mirinae, the first storm to hit Việt Nam this year, made landfall with wind speeds of level 11–12 (about 100-130km per hour). It damaged crops, uprooted thousands of trees and caused massive power cuts in the north including in Hà Nội, Thái Bình, Hải Phòng, Hà Nam and Ninh Bình.

The PM asked the Agriculture and Rural Development Ministry to closely supervise drainage, the operation of reservoirs and dyke protection.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade was asked to fix electricity problems and ensure power supply, while the Transport Ministry took measures to resume smooth traffic.

Localities would calculate losses and damage and offer assistance to affected people as soon as possible.

According to Electricity of Việt Nam (EVN), about 1 million people suffered from power cuts when strong winds brought down about 17,000 high voltage electric poles.

Until yesterday, EVN had fixed the problem on the 500kV Thường Tín–Nho Quan and 220kV Ninh Bình–Bỉm Sơn electrical lines. About 321 out of 493 damaged power wires were fixed.

Ngô Nam Phong, chairman of EVN Ninh Bình, said that more than 200 electric poles in the province were leaning over or had fallen down because of the storm, causing power blackouts in the whole province.

Power supply was mostly resumed late afternoon on Thursday, he said.

The storm also unroofed thousands of houses, uprooted trees and flooded thousands of hectares of crops, Phong said.

The National Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control reported that almost 200,000ha of rice fields were flooded including 18,000ha in Hà Nam, 1,540ha in Hà Nội, 50,000ha in Thái Bình, 77,800ha in Nam Định, 37,000ha in Ninh Bình and 650ha in Hòa Bình.

About 20,800ha of other crops had been flooded including 8,000ha in Thái Bình, 8,500ha in Nam Định and 3,000ha in Ninh Bình.

The committee warned at yesterday’s meeting about a new low pressure system that has formed to the east of the Philippine’s sea, which might gain strength to become a storm in the next few days and enter the East Sea.

Vice Head of the Cultivation Department under the Agriculture Ministry, Nguyễn Như Cường, said that irrigation and drainage were the key tasks now. Slow drainage plus continued heavy rain could damage the crops, he said.

Under the impact of the storm, the northern mountainous province of Bắc Kạn saw heavy rain in the last two days.

Accompanying the rain, floods and landslides occurred, restricting vehicle movement, particularly cars and trucks, a Vietnam News Agency reporter said.

Thousands of cubic metres of rock and soil slid down Ba Bồ Mountain Pass, blocking traffic on provincial highway 258B. Landslides buried a filling station and damaged a house in Yên Mỹ Commune, Chợ Đồn District.

In Hà Nội, heaps of branches and leaves from uprooted trees remained along streets until yesterday, waiting for removal. About 700 trees were reportedly uprooted or broken in Hà Nội during the storm. — VNS

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