Death toll from Vietnam storm tops 60

  • 07/11/2017
A woman wades through shoulder-deep water.
A woman wades through shoulder-deep water. Photo credit: Reuters

The death toll from a typhoon and ensuing floods in Vietnam has reached 61 and the government is warning some reservoirs are dangerously near capacity after persistent rain.

Typhoon Damrey tore across central Vietnam at the weekend just days before the region is due to host the APEC summit of Asia-Pacific leaders, among them US President Donald Trump, China's Xi Jinping and Russia's Vladimir Putin.

The Search and Rescue Committee said 61 people had been killed and 28 were missing. Some victims were in vessels that capsized at sea. Others were killed in landslides.

More than 2000 homes had collapsed and more than 80,000 had been damaged, it said.

Waves caused by Typhoon Damrey hit a dock in Haikou, south China's Hainan province, September 26, 2005. A typhoon roared across China's southern Hainan on Monday, the strongest storm to hit the tropical resort island in more than 30 years, and forced more than 170,000 people to flee their homes. CHINA OUT REUTERS/China Newsphoto - RP6DRNAYYHAA
Photo credit: Reuters

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc chaired an emergency meeting on the disaster. Ministers said that because some dams were so full, water might need to be released - potentially worsening flooding downstream.

In Danang, authorities called on soldiers and local people to clean up so the beach resort would be ready for delegates to the meetings of Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation, which started on Monday (local time).

Leaders are due to meet from November 10 and the schedule had not been disrupted because of the weather.

But in much of the ancient town of Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage site that spouses of APEC leaders are scheduled to visit on Saturday, muddy waters rose to head height and people boated through the streets.

The storm moved from the coastal area into a key coffee-growing region of the world's biggest producer of robusta coffee beans. The typhoon had damaged some coffee trees at the start of the harvest season, farm officials said. But farmers in Daklak, the heart of the region, said the damage was limited.

Authorities said that more than 7000 farm animals had been killed.