Illustrative image (Source: Xinhua)
 
Hanoi (VNA) – Local firm CMVietnam has expressed its readiness to partner with its major contractor, Korean SK Engineering & Construction, and Lao authorities in the search and rescue efforts following the collapse of the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydropower dam in the Lao province of Attapeu on July 23.

CMVietnam is a sub-contractor of two packages worth nearly 385 billion VND (16.9 million USD) which have mostly been completed and are set for transfer soon, including construction on a factory, an electricity-distribution station, a fire prevention and control system, a communications system, and an electromechanical system, among others. They form part of the works under the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydropower project.

Its representative said the incident happened far from the area where CMVietnam is building and as such its work, personnel, and equipment are unaffected.

Built in 2013 at the cost of 1.2 billion USD, the dam has a total capacity of 410MW and is scheduled for completion by 2019. It is a joint effort among SK Engineering & Construction, Korea Western Power, Thailand’s Ratchaburi Electricity Generating Holding, and Lao Holding State Enterprise.

The Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydropower dam burst at 8pm on July 23, releasing 5 billion cubic metres of water, causing flash floods in 10 low-lying villages completely isolating Sanamxay district. Five out of Sanamxay district’s villages, namely May, Hinlath, NhaytheSanong Tay, Thasengchan and Thahin, were entirely submerged.

Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith told media on July 25 night after inspecting the disaster-hit sites that initial figures showed 131 people were missing.

The Attapeu Provincial Administration Office had previously confirmed the death toll from the incident amounted to 19.-VNA