13 officers and soldiers out of 21 people in the rescue team of Rao Trang 3 Hydropower Plant (Thua Thien Hue Province) have now lost contact after a landslide at 0 am dawn on October 13, with a forest ranger station and two field camps being buried. Among missing is Major General Nguyen Van Man, deputy commander of Military Region 4.
Eight of them were contacted the next morning.
On the afternoon of October 13, the Thua Thien – Hue Steering Committee for Disaster Prevention and Search and Rescue said that 40 workers in Rao Trang 3 hydroelectricity, including 3 Indian experts, ran out to Rao Trang 4 hydropower plant in the same commune of Phong Xuan.
Major General Pham Van Ty, deputy chief of the Office of the National Committee for Incident and Disaster Response and Search and Rescue, provided the information on October 13 afternoon.
The delegation had 21 people led by Deputy Commander of Military Region 4, Major General Nguyen Van Man and Mr. Nguyen Thanh Binh, vice chairman of Thua Thien Hue Provincial People’s Committee. Colonel Ngo Nam Cuong, commander of the Military Command of Thua Thien – Hue province was also present in this delegation.
The group departed at 2 pm on October 12 from Phong Dien district Party Committee’s headquarters to Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant. At 4 pm, the group arrived underground on Road 71 where their vehicles could not pass. So, they left their cars and walked into Rao Trang 3 Hydropower Plant about 13 km.
At 9 pm of the same day, the delegation arrived at sub-area 67, Song Bo Forest Protection Station (stationed on the way to move) to rest and they planned to continue their way early in the next morning.
According to information sent to the province’s authorities at 10 pm on October 12, the delegation stopped at the forest ranger’s house.
At 0 am on October 13, there appeared a loud bang, the collapsed mountains and rock covered the forest ranger’s house where the delegation was resting, and at the same time two field tents were buried.
After that, 8 people who escaped are now contacted, the remaining 13 people have been missing, including 11 army officers and two local officers.
Before that, at 1 pm of October 12, receiving news from people that workers constructing Rao Trang 3 Hydropower in Phong Dien district were buried by landslides (due to floods), Major General Nguyen Van Man, deputy commander of the 4th Military Region directly commanded the rescue team to search.
Meanwhile, there are 3 workers building Rao Trang 3 hydropower company confirmed by the representative of Rao Trang 3 Hydropower Joint Stock Company as dead and their corpses being taken out by road.
This afternoon (October 13), discussing with Dan Tri reporter, Mr. Nguyen Dai Thanh, director of Rao Trang Hydropower Joint Stock Company 3 informed that the total number of dead and missing is currently 30 people including 17 workers (3 people died, 14 people were missing) and 13 officers and soldiers of the rescue team (missing).
Currently, there are 40 workers in Rao Trang 3 Hydropower Plant who have moved by forest road through Rao Trang 4 Hydropower Plant to shelter safely. The amount of food in Rao Trang 4 Hydropower Plant is only enough for 1 day.
The two hydroelectricity plants are in the areas seriously affected by landslides, if they want to reach them, they must go by water but the water is flowing fast due to floods.
Mr. Nguyen Van Phuong, vice chairman of Thua Thien Hue Provincial People’s Committee, said that the rescue force had made a plan on October 13 to try to bring all people stuck at Rao Trang 4 hydropower plant back by boat.
Thanh Nien newspaper reported that the authorities are currently establishing the Front Command to plan the rescue, including the participation of excavators, special vehicles, and helicopters.
Local media reported that due to heavy rains, the route about 20 km to the Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant has more than 10 major landslides with 4 fast flowing streams.
Rao Trang 3 hydropower plant in Phong Xuan commune, Phong Dien district, Thua Thien – Hue has completed 90% of construction items.
The plant has an installed capacity of 11 MW, with a total investment capital of VND290.8 billion and an expected land use area of 11.1 hectares.
The engineer soldiers are using all means to pave the way to the hydroelectric plant area, currently the forces are about 2km away from the scene of the landslide.
In 2017, Zing newspaper reported that four hydropower plants, including Rao Trang 3 and 4, were being built in Phong Dien nature reserve, Thua Thien Hue province, causing 200 hectares of special-use forests to be lost, affecting conservation and biodiversity.
As of October 12, floods made 23 dead and 18 missing
Office of the National Committee for Incident, Disaster and Search and Rescue, Department of Rescue and Rescue (Ministry of Defense), said statistics until 5.30 pm on October 12, rain and flood in the past few days at Central and Central Highlands provinces killed 23 people (Quang Binh 2, Quang Tri 8, Thua Thien-Hue 3, Da Nang 1, Quang Nam 4, Quang Ngai 3, Gia Lai 1, Dak Lak 1 person).
In addition, the flood also made 18 people missing (Quang Tri 6 people, Thua Thien-Hue 3 people, Da Nang 3 people, Quang Nam 2 people, Quang Ngai 3 people, Gia Lai 1 person).
Flooding in the Central region is likely to continue with heavy rain
Currently, the rain in the Central Central provinces has decreased and flooding has slowed down. However, from October 16 to October 20, heavy rain is expected to return and cause prolonged flooding in the central provinces.
Mr. Vu Duc Long, deputy director of the National Center for Hydrometeorological Forecasting, said that at the information session about typhoon No. 7 and flood in the Central, took place on the afternoon of October 13.
According to Mr. Long, the central provinces are not affected by typhoon No. 7, so from today the rain has gradually decreased. Flooding in rivers from Quang Binh to Quang Nam is slowly decreasing.
However, in some places such as downstream Kien Giang river (Quang Binh), Thach Han river, O Lau river (Quang Tri), the flood is still high, on the level 3. The flood forecast on rivers will continue to fall tonight but the inundation persists in Le Thuy district (Quang Binh), the area bordering Thua Thien Hue and Quang Tri, due to the low level of this area.
The Huong River in Thua Thien Hue is still flooded quite deeply, the water level is above the level 3. People also need to pay attention, not excluding the possibility that hydroelectric lakes and reservoirs in Thua Thien Hue increase and discharge to cause flooding.
Mr. Long said that around October 15, after typhoon No. 7 weakened, a tropical depression moved from off the coast of the Philippines into the East Sea (South China Sea) and it was likely that it would strengthen into a storm that would cause heavy rains in Central and South Central regin.
“This storm and the interaction of cold air will cause long-lasting heavy rains in the provinces from Quang Binh to Quang Ngai from October 16 to October 20.
From October 17 to October 20, central provinces continue to face flooding again “- Mr. Long warned.
It is expected that at 1 pm of October 14, typhoon No. 7 right on the waters of the Northern Delta and North Central Delta provinces with winds level 11. Meanwhile, the tropical depression can become strong storm No. 8 heading to the Central region.
This information was said by Mr. Hoang Phuc Lam, deputy director of the National Center for Meteorological and Hydrological Forecasting at the press conference about typhoon No. 7 taking place on the evening of October 13.
“The feature of typhoon No. 7 is that there are relatively strong winds and very heavy rain after the storm. The storm circulation is relatively large, the cloudy area now covers the entire northwestern East Sea, China’s Hainan Island, and the Gulf of Tonkin.
According to Mr. Lam, the most dangerous for this storm is heavy rain on the mainland provinces of the Northeast, the North Delta and the North Central region, the heavy rain forecast will take place from October 14 to October 16, the rainfall forecast at 200 – 350mm for the whole time, some places over 400mm. The mountainous provinces of the North are at high risk of flash floods, landslides and urban inundation.
In addition, the flood will increase rapidly on October 14 and Oct 15, the circulation after the storm will cause heavy rain in the upper area of Laos, causing the amount of water to flow, causing floods in Thanh Hoa and Nghe An.
Be wary of water discharge of hydroelectric lakes
On October 14 and Oct 15, due to the storm No. 7, in the Northern and Northern Central regions, there will be a flood on the Thao, Ma, Ngan Sau and Ngan Pho rivers. Waters in the rivers may rise to level 2 and some places- level 3. Song Thao, Chay River can be on alert at level 2.
Starting from 6 pm on October 13, Hoa Binh lake started discharging.