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05 Nov 2007 13:45
Floods have killed at least 46 people in central Vietnam in the past 10 days, and a typhoon making its way across the South China Sea is forecast to dump more rain this week, reports said on Monday.
The region, which includes the Central Highlands coffee belt, has been hit hard by storms and floods since early October, which have killed nearly 200 people, caused property and crop damage of $300-million and delayed the coffee harvest by two weeks.
Flooding since October 26 has killed 46 people in nine central provinces and Danang city, reports from provincial disaster-management committees said.
Weather forecasters said Typhoon Peipah, which crossed the Philippines island of Luzon early on Monday, would bring rain again to central Vietnam.
Peipah killed five people in the northern Philippine province of Isabela and forced 500 people from their homes, disaster officials said.
The Vietnamese government said a new wave of floods could hit in the next two to three days.
Rains delayed the start of Vietnam’s coffee harvest, squeezing supplies to global markets.
More rain from Typhoon Peipah, a Chinese word for a popular pet fish in Macau, would further slow farmers’ drying process, delaying the arrival of fresh beans at Saigon Port for loading.
The three-month storm season, packed with up to 10 typhoons, often ends in Vietnam in October, but this year tropical storms appear to be hitting later than usual.
Peipah would be the sixth typhoon to strike Vietnam so far this season.—Reuters
Additional reporting by Carmel Crimmins in Manila
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