Friday, May 29, 2009

Flash floods kill 6 in Vietnam

Hanoi - Six are dead and two missing after three days of flash floods damaged hundreds of homes in central Vietnam, an official said Thursday. The floods hit the central provinces of Nghe An and Binh Dinh between Monday and Wednesday.

Nguyen Thi Phuong, a disaster official in Nghe An Province, said the first flood struck at about 10 pm Tuesday, washing away a home where a family of five were sleeping.

"We found the bodies of three people about six kilometers away yesterday," Phuong said.

Phuong said the victims included a married couple, their 8-year-old son and two of the husband's brothers. The bodies of the husband and one brother are still missing.

After a flash flood Monday in Binh Dinh Province, the bodies of a mother and two sons were found in a stream, according to the state-run newspaper Tuoi Tre (Young People).

Locals said the victims had been washed away while walking through a field.

Vietnam's Central Hydro-Meteorological Forecast Center said the floods were caused by rainfall topping 50 millimeters in one night. The floods blocked 20 kilometers of roads and damaged more than 150 homes.

Vietnam is a disaster-prone country, where heavy rains and flooding kill hundreds every year.

Last year, natural disasters killed 550 people in Vietnam and caused damage amounting to more than 700 million dollars.
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