|The direction of the storm Podul. Photo NCHMF|
HÀ NỘI — The Central Steering Committee on Natural Disaster Prevention and Control has asked its sub-committees, relevant ministries and sectors to brace for tropical storm Podul that is moving towards Việt Nam.
Deputy Prime Minister Trịnh Đình Dũng, head of the committee said the storm would enter the country during the National Day holidays so it was necessary for tourists to pay attention to weather forecasts.
The storm was expected to make landfall on Friday night together with a rising tide, causing difficulties for responders.
“These are issues that ministries, branches and localities should pay utmost attention to while dealing with the storm. We cannot be negligent because there are only two days left before the storm landing," Dũng said at a meeting held on Wednesday to discuss measures to cope with the tropical storm in the East Sea.
Nguyễn Xuân Cường, minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, said areas forecast to have heavy rain were the northern mountainous provinces, the Red River Delta, the north-central region and the Central Highlands. These areas have recently been experienced damage to soil structure.
If heavy rains continued to occur in these areas, it was necessary to prepare for flash floods and landslides, he said.
“These areas have many reservoirs, including degraded and small hydropower reservoirs, so localities must prepare for possible incidents," said Cường.
The Border Guard High Command said as of Wednesday afternoon, the command had provided information about the storm’s direction and progress to 70,000 vehicles and 300,000 fishermen. However, nearly 800 ships with over 5,000 people were operating in dangerous areas.
The same day, the Central Steering Committee on Natural Disaster Prevention and Control sent urgent messages to 13 provinces and cities to make plans the storm.
The concerned ministries and authorities of the localities in the path of the storm were asked to take necessary measures to ensure the safety of local residents and their properties.
The vessels operating at sea will be informed of the storm so that they can escape or stay away from the danger zone.
Local authorities were asked to review and be ready to evacuate residents from areas at high risk of flash floods.
“Over recent years, the damage caused by floods is much higher after the storm than when it lands, so we need to be fully prepared to deal with the storm for many days," the deputy Prime Minister said.
As of 4pm on Wednesday, the tropical storm was located about 340 kilometres to the east of the Hoàng Sa (Paracel) Islands, packing winds of 60-75 kilometres per hour, according to the National Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Centre.
Podul is moving westwards at a speed of 20 kilometres per hour and is expected to gain further strength over the coming days.
It is forecast that the storm will be located at about 180 kilometres to the east of China’s Hainan Island in the next 24 hours.
Tropical Storm Podul is projected to make landfall on a stretch from Thanh Hóa to Quảng Bình provinces on late August 30. Heavy rains are expected in the northern and central regions from August 29 to September 2. VNS