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Death toll in Vietnam floods reaches 73

Floods in central Vietnam have left 73 people dead as authorities prepare for the arrival of tropical storm.

world Updated: Nov 07, 2007 13:03 IST

Floods in central Vietnam have left 73 people dead, officials said on Thursday, as authorities step up their preparations for the arrival of a tropical storm which is set to hit the country.

About one million people in the region are facing serious food and water shortages, while material losses have reached nearly $200 million, state media said.

Almost 100,000 homes and 18,000 hectares of crops have been damaged and infrastructure throughout the region has been affected, according to the national flood and storm control committee.

In some of the nine regions affected, the waters were beginning to slowly recede. But weather forecasters in the country said tropical storm Pepi, Vietnam's sixth this year, has changed direction toward the southern region and is expected to land this weekend.

Coast guards have maintained regular contact with more than 40,000 fishing vessels, which have been told to shelter from the storm.

Disaster authorities said earlier they had evacuated more than 160,000 people from coastal areas.

First Published: Nov 07, 2007 12:59 IST