The Central Steering Committee for Flood and Storm Prevention and Control convened a meeting in Hanoi on November 28 to discuss urgent measures to cope with storm Sinlaku, the fourth to hit the East Sea this year, as it is heading towards the south central coast of Vietnam.

At 4pm on November 28, the storm was at 11.4 degrees north latitude and 115.4 degrees east longitude, about 80 km east of Truong Sa archipelago’s Song Tu Tay island, packing winds of up to 88km per hour, Dang Thanh Mai, Deputy Director of the Central Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting Centre told the meeting.

It is forecast to directly hit the central provinces from Binh Dinh to Khanh Hoa on the evening of November 29 and may cause coastal areas inundated in two or three metres of water since it will coincide with tidal surges, she added.

Vu Van Tu, head of the committee’s office, said border guards in localities from Da Nang city to Ca Mau and Kien Giang provinces worked with local authorities to inform 45,433 ships at sea with 237,390 crew members about the storm to take shelter.

Head of the committee Cao Duc Phat, who is also the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, asked the ministries and localities to guide vehicles, particularly those working at the centre of the East Sea, how to escape from the dangerous area between the 10th and 15th latitudes.

He ordered Phu Yen, Binh Dinh, and Khanh Hoa provinces to ban ships from going out to the sea on November 29. Meanwhile, people in vulnerable areas are also urged to be evacuated.

The official asked for examinations over reservoirs and anti-flood and -storm facilities while requesting neighbouring Central Highlands provinces to closely follow the storm’s movement and brace for flashfloods and landslides.-VNA