Last update 1/21/2011 3:07:37 PM (GMT+7)

Seven people die from cold in central Vietnam

VietNamNet Bridge – At least three people in the central provinces of Quang Tri and Phu Yen died from gas poisoning while they were warming themselves by burning coal. Four others in Quang Nam died from infections induced by the cold weather. Thousands of cattle also died from cold in the last several weeks.


The temperature in central Vietnam, especially in the mountain region, has been 10-11 degrees Celsius for the last two weeks, causing heavy damage to the region.

Four people in Quang Nam province died from cold related illnesses. Three of them including a mother and her baby and a 80-year-old man suffered from strokes while working in the mountain fields. The last victim of the cold weather was a 2-month-old baby.

Nguyen Thi Kim Cuc, Chair of Tra Giang commune in the mountain district of Nam Tra My, Quang Nam, said that this is the coldest year in Quang Nam. The prolonged cold weather has severely affected both people and cattle. So far over 200 cattle have died.

“We told locals not to go to the forest early in the morning and return home early in the afternoon. Children and the elderly must be kept warm,” Cuc said.

The central region also has three people who succumbed to gas poisoning  from burning coal in closed rooms. The victims include a 44-year-old man and his 13-year-old son in Quang Tri province and an old man in Phu Yen province.

A doctor from Phu Yen Polytechnic said that since early winter, the hospital has saved at least eight people who were poisoned by coal gas.

Around 13,000 cows and buffaloes died in northern Vietnam.

Hoang Kim Giao, head of the department of livestock production claimed that numerous fish, shrimps and chickens were continuing to die in this extreme cold. The department has instructed local authorities to assist each household whose have lost cattle with VND2 million.

Giao also warned that the number of dead cattle would continue to rise as harsh weather conditions look like prolonging until Tet. He has ordered local authorities to take all possible measures to protect the cattle from the cold weather.

Severe cold weather to prolong until Tet 

The current cold spell in the northern and central regions has stretched for over 18 days and is showing no signs of abating.   

The National Hydro Meteorological Forecast Center predicts similar conditions to continue until Tet (Lunar New Year).

Temperatures in the Red River Delta and northern parts of the central region have fallen drastically and in Hanoi, the mercury dropped to 8 degrees Celsius.

The temperature is expected to drop further which might cause schools to close. At present, most hospitals in the region are overloaded with people admitted with cold related illnesses.

Fishing boats in danger

The continuous cold spell was bringing high winds and making the sea extremely rough and unsafe for fishing boats. The winds were reported to be up to 75-88 kilometers per hour on Tuesday.

The rough sea and high waves sank a fishing boat in Sa Huynh waters of the central province of Quang Ngai’s Duc Pho District. Two other boats broke down in Binh Son and Tu Nghia districts. The boats were later towed to the mainland by other fishermen.

According to the Quang Ngai Province border army headquarter; the province has about 112 boats with 2,450 people on board who are still trapped in the sea off Truong Sa (Spratly) Islands and Hoang Sa (Paracel) Islands. Most of them are mainly from Binh Son District and Ly Son Island.

The stormy weather has also rendered several boats idle in Quang Nam, Thua Thien-Hue and Quang Tri provinces. 

Fisherman Nguyen Thanh in Phu Vang District  of Thua Thien-Hue  said that the weather was most unusual this year, forcing all boats to stay in the mainland though it was the peak fish season.