The 10th storm to enter the East Sea this year is expected to make landfall in central provinces from Danang to Phu Yen on Thursday, after ripping through the Philippines killing at least 20 people on Sunday.
At a meeting of Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control on Monday morning, director of the National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Mai Van Khiem said Storm Goni was weakening as it passed the Philippines however.
Around 30 hours after it hit the Philippines with wind speeds of up to 183km/h, it entered the East Sea gusting up to 88km/h.
At 1pm on Monday, the storm was 680km from Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) Archipelago, moving westwards at 10-15km/h.
Khiem said the storm would make landfall with wind speeds of 60-75km/h, and there was little chance of it gaining strength.
Heavy rain is forecast from Wednesday afternoon.
“Notably, the rain will blanket central areas already hit by the ninth storm of the year,” Khiem said.
Provinces from Thua Thien-Hue to Phu Yen and north of the Central Highlands will see average rainfall of 100-200mm from Wednesday to Friday.
Provinces from Nghe An to Quang Tri will see average rainfall of 150-300mm from Thursday to Saturday. Flood warnings have been issued in river areas in provinces from Quang Nam to Quang Ngai.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong said that Goni was a super typhoon that lost strength when entering the East Sea.
“It’s difficult to predict the storm’s developments, however,” he said, calling for close observation of the storm.
“We must prepare for the possibility of flash floods, landslides and damage to dams and reservoirs,” Cuong said.
Chairing the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung said even though the storm had weakened, people needed to stay alert.
He asked agencies and localities to call in all vessels from areas in the path of the storm.
People in coastal areas should evacuate, he said.
Meanwhile, according to power companies in the central region, supplies and resumed for 95 per cent of customers affected by the particularly strong ninth storm – Molave – in the central region last week.
About 213,000 people were still without power, mostly in Quang Nam and Quang Ngai provinces.
On Monday afternoon, search and rescue forces recovered the eighth body of 11 people who were buried by a landslide in Phuoc Loc commune, Phuoc Son district in the central province of Quang Nam on October 29. The seventh body was found on Sunday.
Meanwhile, bad weather and rough seas were posing difficulties in the search for 23 fishermen from Binh Dinh vessels – BD 97469 TS and BD 96388 TS.
BD 96388 TS sank 143.5 nautical miles off Cam Ranh on October 27 while seeking shelter from the ninth storm. There were 12 fishermen on board.
BD 97469 TS sank the same day about 172 nautical miles away from Hon Tre Island with 14 fishermen on board.
On October 29, the Hong Kong-registered M/V Fortune Iris rescued three fishermen from BD 97469 TS.
As of Monday, Storm Molave had killed 31 people and injured 134 others, while 49 people remain unaccounted for. Damage has been estimated at 10 trillion dong ($430 million).
VIET NAM NEWS/ASIA NEWS NETWORK