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HCM City facing highest freak-tide in 48 years

Ho Chi Minh City is facing their HIGHEST FREAK-TIDE IN 48 YEARS. Thousands of people in Ho Chi Minh City were confused at flood-tides at a level of 1.49 meters on November 26, the highest in the past 48 years. Some 40 sections of the city’s dyke system have been broken and hundreds of pupils are unable to attend school. Meanwhile, the flood-tides are still forecast to be increased. Hundreds of households in the district have to deal with the tides. The area that has seen the most serious flooding has some homes inundated under 3 meters of water. “Two thirds of the 109-hectare streets are being flooded.” There is a risk of the breakdown of the dykes. “Women, the elderly and children have been evacuated on November 26. If there is any more dyke breaking, the rest will be relocated to higher areas.” When the tides rose, it caused traffic halt in a national highway. Meanwhile, people strived to bring their properties out of the flooded houses. Some companies and shops had to be closed. The tides were so strong that it sunk many documents and computers. The city irrigation and flood and storm prevention department forecasted that the peak tides may remain at 1.49 meters or more for two days.

High tides on the Sai Gon River in the last two days caused 38 sections of dike to collapse, flooding many houses in Thu Duc, Binh Thanh and Cu Chi districts. High tides on the rivers of Tuy An Song Cau in the south central province of Phu Yen caused 50 houses to collapse and sank 11 fishing vessels. Local authorities in the districts were continuing to evacuate people living in high-risk areas. The two-way lanes across Ca Pass have been blocked by huge rocks that had fallen on the road.


High tides have flooded parts of the capital, Jakarta, with thousands forced to flee their homes. Pumps were installed to bring down water levels, which were 6ft high in places. But experts say that they expect tides to continue to wreak havoc through the end of the month.


The exceptionally high tides are part of an 18-year cycle. The situation is exacerbated by the failure to fix a sea barrier breached more than a week ago. Authorities pumped out some of the water, which was 23 feet (7 meters) deep in the worst hit areas and washed more than a mile (1.6 kilometers) inland Monday. At least 2,200 houses were inundated, some with chest-deep water. Part of the problem is global warming, which causes sea levels to rise and may make coastal cities like Jakarta especially vulnerable to flooding and monsoon storms.

Boats and a large truck share the road in Jakarta, Indonesia, Tuesday, November 27, 2007, after tidal flooding forced thousands of evacuations and closed the road to the airport, stranding travelers.

Indonesia's environment minister said coastal cities like the Indonesian capital are especially vulnerable to global warming, which, he said, is causing the sea level to rise.

Photograph by Beawiharta Beawiharta/Reuters
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