Friday , July 19 2024

Storm Noru to approach central Vietnam with 166 kph winds

Storm Noru, one of the strongest storms in 20 years, entered the East Sea early Monday and is setting course for Da Nang and its central region neighbors.

The storm was 810 km away from Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelago at 4 a.m. Monday, carrying winds of 118-149 kph. It is set to be 410 kilometers away from the archipelago at 10 p.m. Monday, and will move at speed of 20-25 kph Tuesday, boosted by passing through a warm sea region, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting.

By Tuesday evening its wind speed could reach 166 kph, and will continue to move west and maintain that strength when it is around 170 km from the central region, from Da Nang southward to Binh Dinh Province, at 4 a.m. Wednesday.

The Japan Meteorological Station and the Hong Kong weather forecasting agency also forecast the storm will hit Da Nang and its southern neighbor Quang Nam, home to Hoi An, Wednesday morning.

Central localities from Quang Binh to Binh Thuan are reviewing a plan to evacuate over 860,000 residents.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has ordered localities to be alert to the storm and cancel unnecessary meetings, ban vessels from the sea and let students stay home.

Noru is the fourth storm to enter the East Sea – known as South China Sea internationally – this year and is likely to be the strongest so far.

The storm is said to be similar to Storm Xangsane which hit central Vietnam in September 2006, leaving 76 people dead and missing, nearly 350,000 houses and 1,000 vessels sunk or damaged.

Weather experts predict that after Noru, 3-5 storms will hit the East Sea, of which one to two will directly affect Vietnam.

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