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Central Vietnam evacuating 1.1 million residents due to fast-moving storm

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HCMC – The central provinces from Quang Binh to Danang are racing against time to evacuate over 1.1 million residents to safe areas, as Noul, the fifth tropical storm to hit Vietnam in 2020, has been moving faster this morning, September 17.

As of 6 a.m. today, 511 fishing boats carrying 3,706 people were seen operating in dangerous areas. Besides this, 102 boats operating in waters from Quang Binh to Quang Nam were informed of the storm’s possible direction, according to a report presented at a meeting held this morning on measures to cope with this powerful storm.

Speaking at the meeting, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong asked the competent forces and local authorities to jointly urge fishing boats to move far away from vulnerable areas.

The border guard and marine forces were ordered to gather 256,000 soldiers, 2,600 vehicles and six boats to help with rescue operations.

The transportation authority was told to notify port authorities, provinces and cities and owners of fishing boats of the storm’s direction to avoid damage. Localities need to check fishing equipment and must take fishermen to the mainland before the storm makes a landfall.

By 10 a.m. in the day, the storm was spotted some 340 kilometers southeast of Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) Archipelago, packing strong winds measuring 90-100 kilometers per hour, gusting at level 12, according to the National Center For Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.

In the next 24 hours, Noul is forecast to move west-northwest at some 20 kilometers per hour and is likely to strengthen.

The storm may hover around the waters from Quang Binh to Quang Ngai at 10 a.m. on September 18, with gale-force wind of 100-135 kilometers per hour, gusting at level 14.

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