Hanoi's Department for Agriculture and Rural Development has started to inspect dyke systems and irrigation projects ahead of the rainy season in June.

Head of the municipal Flood, Storm Control and Dyke Management Department, Do Duc Thinh, said this year's weather was forecast to be unpredictable, and could threaten the safety of dykes, reservoirs and irrigation plants.

Regular inspections are necessary to minimise possible damage, he said, noting that the department has asked local authorities to prepare emergency staff and equipment in case of an incident.

Companies that operated irrigation plants and reservoirs have been asked to develop suitable water-storage plans and flood/storm prevention measures.

Hanoi has nearly 800km of dykes, 167km of embankments and 84 flood and storm run-offs. Over 37km of dykes along the Hong (Red) River are directly protecting the city centre.

However, most dykes were made from sand on sharp bends with narrow, weak foundations.

In March, the Hanoi People's Committee introduced a new plan to ensure dyke safety, security and urban development for an estimated cost of over 45 trillion VND (2.13 billion USD).-VNA