27 dead as Typhoon Damrey batters Vietnam
Hanoi: At least 27 people have died and nearly two dozen are missing after Typhoon Damrey barrelled into Vietnam, authorities said on Sunday, just days before the country welcomes world leaders to the APEC summit.
The storm, which made landfall on Saturday, is the worst in decades to strike the southern coastal region — an area normally spared typhoons that usually hit further north.
More than 40,000 homes were destroyed as heavy rains and 130 km/h (80 mph) winds tore through the region, leaving 27 dead and 22 missing, according to Vietnam's disaster management office.
Coastal Khanh Hoa province, home to the popular white sand Nha Trang beach, was hardest hit with 16 dead and 10 injured, the government said.
More than 30,000 people, including foreign tourists, were evacuated from the area ahead of the storm. Photos showed residents wading through knee-deep floodwaters, as toppled electricity poles and trees blocked roads. A dozen flights were cancelled and railway services were suspended, while local authorities in Phu Yen province said Tuy Hoa city "has never suffered such devastation". There were also reports of minor damage around 500 kilometres north in Danang, the coastal city where Vietnam will host the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit next week.