Vietnam evacuates residents as tropical storm makes landfall

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Vietnam's storm prevention committee on Saturday (July 30) ordered localities to evacuate more than 271,000 residents in areas affected by typhoon Nock-ten.

The tropical storm has made landfall in Hai Phong City, Nam Dinh, Ninh Binh and Thai Binh Provinces in the north and Thanh Hoa, Nghe An and Ha Tinh Provinces in the central region.

The Central Flood and Storm Prevention Committee said the development of the storm was unpredictable since it was partly affected by another storm, Muifa, which is forming off the coast of the Philippines.

Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Cao Duc Phat, who heads the committee, ordered the above-mentioned localities to relocate 271,404 residents in storm-hit areas to safer places.

The committee asked localities to voluntarily prohibit vessels in the Tonkin Gulf from sailing and instruct vessels on the Truong Sa (Spratly) and Hoang Sa (Paracel) Islands to take shelter.

Affected cities and provinces must be ready to evacuate residents in low lying areas and areas prone to flash floods, it said.

Localities already hit by typhoon Nock-ten must take immediate measures to ensure the safety of people and their properties while releasing flood waters from reservoirs, the committee ordered.

It has sent two teams to the central provinces of Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh and Quang Binh to support anti-flood work.

So far, no fatalities from typhoon Nock-ten have been reported in Vietnam.

On July 28, the storm sank a Vietnamese fishing boat with 11 fishermen on the Spratly islands, but the fishermen were rescued by a boat from the Philippines.

National carrier Vietnam Airlines has canceled six flights from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to Vinh and vice versa planned on July 30.

Flights from the south to Hanoi and Hai Phong the same day will be delayed due to the storm, it announced.

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