At least 48 people have died, 1 8 are missing and 19 have been injured in floods brought by torrential rains starting last week in the central provinces, the Central Flood Control Committee reported Thursday.
Quang Binh Province was hardest hit with 33 people dying and 14 missing. Ha Tinh Province ranked second with seven deaths, while Quang Tri and Nghe An posted three and five respectively, it said.
"The rains have stopped falling and the water level has visibly lowered. But the possibility of finding the missing is reduced after several days of searching," AFP quoted Hoang Van Quyet, an official with Quang Binh Province's natural disaster committee, as saying.
Many houses, schools, bridges and other constructions were either submerged or damaged by floods across the north of the central coast, the committee said.
More than 17,500 houses were submerged and 638 bridges and drainage systems were swept away or destroyed in Ha Tinh Province.
Tran Minh Ky, vice chairman of Ha Tinh's People's Committee, told the Tuoi Tre newspaper that Huong Khe District had been hit hard by flooding partly because the Ho Ho Hydropower Dam had failed to release water when heavy rains came.
In fact, as the sluice gates could be operated because of a power cut, water had overflown the dam and put it at risk of being breached, Ky said.
Water levels in rivers from Ha Tinh to Quang Binh provinces, meanwhile, have gone down after reaching the highest danger levels over the past few days, as rains have stopped or decreased.
Food and emergency medical supplies are being sent to affected communities, state media reported.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on Wednesday ordered authorities in affected areas to spend budget funds to buy instant noodles and bottled water for local people in flooded area.
Tropical storms and flooding regularly hit Vietnam at this time of year.