Whirlwinds tear roofs off hundreds houses in northern provinces hinh anh 1A house was unroofed in Dien Bien province on the late night of April 15. (Photo: VNA)

Dien Bien (VNA) – Hundreds of houses in the northern mountainous provinces of Dien Bien and Yen Bai were unroofed by whirlwinds on the late night of April 15.

In Dien Bien, the whirlwinds, alongside heavy rains, blew away roofs of 162 houses in Quai Nua and Mun Chung communes in Tuan Giao district, of which, 17 were seriously damaged, according to Lo Van Cuong, Vice Chairman of the district’s People’s Committee.

The district mobilised forces to clean up and repair the damaged houses on April 16 while two hardest-hit households in Mun Chung got 1 million VND (44 USD) in financial aid each as part of the district’s first effort to support the victims.

As of the noon of April 16, the authorities estimated that as many as 63 houses and school venues in Tua Chua district have been unroofed or damaged, including 47 in Muong Bang commune. The whirlwinds also sank a boat in Da River and destroyed a number of local crop areas.

In Mu Cang Chai district of Yen Bai province, the downpours and whirlwinds torn roofs off over 210 houses, mostly in the communes of Pung Luong, Nam Khat, Kim Noi, Lao Chai, De Xu Phinh and La Pan Tan, causing an estimated economic loss of about 200 million VND (8,800 USD).

The district authorities have shortly responded to the situation by providing relief to the victims and cleaning up the environment.

Storms and tropical depressions are expected to arrive in the East Sea early in 2018, with a high chance of a storm forming in the south of the East Sea in mid-February, according to the National Centre for Hydro-Meteorology Forecasting.

Thunderstorm, lightning, whirlwind, and hail are predicted to occur nationwide in April and May. The average temperature in February, March and April is forecast to stay around that of the same period of many years, with strong cold waves to continue in the north in the second half of February but less intense and for shorter duration. Meanwhile, heat waves are expected to come late.

From March to April, rainfall in the north will be 10-30 percent lower than the average of the same period of many years, while the central region will see about the same rainfall as that of the same period of many years.-VNA