QUANG NGAI (VNS) — Waterway police in central Quang Ngai Province punished tens of illegal sand miners along the Tra Khuc River after a week-long inspection revealed several flagrant violations.
"Some people were caught mining sand right at the foot of Truong Xuan bridge and near the river's dyke, affecting the safety of both the bridge and the dyke," said Nguyen Hong Thanh, deputy head of Quang Ngai Province's waterway police office.
Illegal sand mining has been happening in the province for years, according to Thanh, but the problem intensified after floods last November swept a large amount of sand down from the upper reaches of the river.
Local authorities regularly punish illegal sand miners, but they still find ways to circumvent the law, such as by working at night and changing their location frequently, he said.
There is increasing public concern about illegal sand exploitation along the river section running through Son Tinh district, as it causes serious pollution and puts local residents at high risk of soil erosion, Thanh added. — VNS