Race against time to find landslide victims: Deputy PM

Thursday, 2020-10-29 15:39:46
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Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung (fourth from left) directs the search and rescue operations in Nam Tra My district, Quang Nam province on October 29, 2020. (Photo: NDO)
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NDO/VNA – Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung on October 29 ordered competent forces to race against time and mobilise vehicles to clear out National Highway 40 so as to access the sites of the landslides that buried 53 people in two mountainous communes in central Quang Nam province.

>>> PM urges for prompt rescue efforts after severe landslide hits central province

Right after learning about the landslides that hit Tra Leng and Tra Van communes in Nam Tra My district on October 28 night, the Deputy PM, other Government officials and leaders of Quang Nam province came to Bac Tra My district near the landslide sites to instruct the search and rescue operations on October 29.

Armed forces of Military Zone 5 and the Military High Command of Quang Nam province are playing the core role in the special efforts.

The Deputy PM also suggested accessing the sites via waterways and air routes.

According to Thai Hoang Vu, Chairman of the People’s Committee of Bac Tra My district, five slides have been reported along National Highway 40, disrupting traffic and hindering rescue efforts.

As of 12:00 on October 29, three of the five slides on the highway had been handled, while the remainders are set to be cleared out by 4 pm the same day, and rescue forces are expected to approach the two communes by 5 pm on the day.

Vehicles mobilised to join the mission. (Photo: NDO)

Lt. Gen. Nguyen Long Cang, Commander of Military Zone 5, said more than 200 officers and soldiers headed to the sites for search and rescue operations on October 28 night.

They are now in the centre of Bac Tra My district, nearly 15 km from the landslide sites, while roads are being cleared out.

Phan Viet Cuong, Secretary of the provincial Party Committee, said the bodies of 16 out of the 53 victims have been found.

The province has called for the involvement of local youths in the response work, and asked residents in mountainous districts to stay on high alert against further landslides and floods, he said.