Two more storms coming; typhoon Haitang kills 4

TN News

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Storm-battered Vietnam is bracing for two more storms even as it is cleaning up after Typhoon Haitang, which killed four people and injured four others in the central region.

Typhoon Nesat, after cutting a swathe through the Philippines, leaving 35 dead and another 45 missing, is headed toward the country.

Nesat could become the fifth storm to hit Vietnam this year if it makes landfall in the northern region as forecast on September 30.

"Nesat is likely to be the strongest storm to hit Vietnam in years, equivalent to the deadly Typhoon Xangsane that hit Da Nang in 2006," Le Thanh Hai, deputy director of the National Hydrometeorological Forecast Center, told Vietnam News Agency.

Typhoon Xangsane claimed 72 lives and caused damage worth VND10 trillion (then US$630 million).

"The possibility [of the typhoon making landfall] is high, about 70 percent," Hai said.

The typhoon, which lies centered over the East Sea with wind strengths of 118-133km, is expected to reach China's Hainan Island early on September 30 before entering Vietnamese waters, according to the center.

Another typhoon, Nalgae, originating in the Philippine Sea is heading west toward Luzon Island. It is forecast to reach the East Sea on October 2 and make landfall over Vietnam to become the sixth storm of the year.

Earlier, at least four people died and four others were injured as Haitang swept through the central region on Tuesday before weakening into a tropical depression.

Two of the four deaths were reported in Thua Thien-Hue Province, while Quang Tri and Phu Yen provinces reported one death each.

The storm also damaged 128 houses and inundated 5,167 hectares of rice and other crops in Thua Thien-Hue and Quang Tri.

It brought heavy rains to the central region between Nghe An and Quang Nam provinces as well as in the Central Highlands, with water in rivers rising to alarming levels.

Streets were flooded and trees fell in Quang Tri, while in Hue, low areas were flooded, marooning many people who had to go around in boats.

The storm worsened the flooding in the Mekong Delta, especially in An Giang and Dong Thap provinces, where a number of dikes broke under the pressure of rising waters.

The waters also inundated 2,032 houses in An Giang and 700 hectares of paddies in Dong Thap.

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