Death toll from typhoon in Vietnam rises to 44

Death toll from typhoon in Vietnam rises to 44

HUE, Vietnam – Reuters
Death toll from typhoon in Vietnam rises to 44

The death toll rose to at least 44 on Nov. 6 from the typhoon that pummeled central and southern Vietnam just days before the region is due to host the APEC summit of Asia-Pacific leaders.

Typhoon Damrey, the 12th major storm to hit Vietnam this year, made landfall on Nov. 4 with winds of up to 90 km/h that damaged more than 40,000 homes, knocked down electricity poles and uprooted trees.

The communist state’s Steering Committee for Disaster Prevention said 44 people were now counted dead and 19 were missing. It said 626 houses had collapsed entirely in a trail of destruction that has forced the evacuation of more than 30,000 people.

Heavy rain and high winds lashed the coastal strip on Nov. 5.

Flooding led to a 30 km tailback on Vietnam’s main north-south highway in Thua Thien Hue province.

Battle tanks were mobilized to help with rescue efforts.

“The floodwaters are rising very fast,” said Dinh Cong Hoa, deputy commander of the provincial military command in Nha Trang, which bore the brunt of the typhoon.

One middle-aged woman in Nha Trang, Vo Thi Tuyet Anh, told state television: “I’ve never seen such a strong storm since I was born.”