Four girls aged between 14 and 15 drowned when they were bathing in Ky Cung River in Lang Son Province Wednesday afternoon, local authorities said.
The tragedy happened at around 1 p.m. when a group of six teenage girls from Van Quan Dist. went swimming in the river, the authorities said.
They suddenly got caught in a strong current. One of the girls managed to swim to shore and call for help.
Residents near the river could only save one more girl while the other four went missing.
The bodies of two of them were found more than 50 meters downstream three hours later. Search continues for the other two.
Drowning kills 6,500-7,000 people in Vietnam every year, more than half of them children, according to the Child Care and Protection Department of Vietnam's ministry of social affairs.
Statistics from the department show an average of nine children drown every day in Vietnam while swimming is not effectively taught in schools.