Explosion splits Vietnam hub road into parts in heavy rain

By Cong Nguyen, Thanh Nien News

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A road in the center of Ho Chi Minh City erupted on Monday in smoke, frightening dozens of  local citizens and passers-by.

Many were taking shelter from the rain under District 1’s Bui Huu Nghia Bridge at around 11 a.m. on June 16, when a loud explosion sound made them all jump.

The explosion, coming from beneath the surface of Hoang Sa Street sent two wide schisms through the surface of the asphalt, each more than 2 meters long and 3 centimeters wide.

The cracks are four meter away from each other.

None was injured in the incident, since the street’s section was empty at the time it occurred.

Local Nguyen Thi Tuong, whose home is close to the scene, told Tuoi Tre that she was cooking her lunch when she suddenly heard a loud noise. When she looked outside, the surface of the road was totally destroyed and some smoke was rising from the cracked asphalt.

The smoke only stopped after 20 minutes, a witness said, adding that the pavement was broken into trenches.

The city Transportation department blocked off the affected section of road and repaired the ruined surface that afternoon.

The cause of the incident has yet to be determined.
Last October,  an underground electrical leak was blamed for causing a similar explosion that ruined the surface of another street in the neighboring district of Binh Thanh.

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