Numerous locations in Hanoi will be submerged after rainfall of over 100 mm, Hanoi People's Committee Chairman Nguyen The Thao said Tuesday at a meeting with the agricultural ministry.
The city's drainage system can manage rainfall of 172 mm over two days now, and 310mm over two days by 2013 when it is upgraded, so the city is helpless when it pours 150mm in just two hours as it did on July 13, Thao said.
"It's a tough fact, but "we have to accept it," he said.
Considering recent abnormal rains, the central part of Hanoi needs projects like underground tunnels which can store rain water and then release it via pumping systems instead of depending solely on surface drainage systems, Thao said.
Agreeing that it was impossible at present for Hanoi to meet the government's demand that city be flood-free during the rainy season, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat said the ministry will study underground tunnels and other solutions for the capital city.
In the meantime, however, Hanoi has to make specific drainage plans for each period like completing the upgrade of the city's major Yen So pumping station this September, Phat said.
In separate news, Tran Thuy, vice director of Hanoi's police department, said Tuesday that 91 intersections in the capital are at risk of frequent traffic jams until this year end.
Worse still, projects aimed at easing traffic jams like tunnels and flyovers are making slow progress, he said.
Over the past six months, the number of vehicles on city roads has kept climbing with the registration of nearly 26,000 cars and over 160,000 motorbikes, Thuy said.
Hanoi police are working with the Department of Transport to deal with current "black-listed" locations and plan measures to prevent new traffic jam hotspots from developing, he added.
Local agencies are also speeding up major traffic projects in preparation for the city's 1,000th anniversary to be held this October, Thuy said.