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148 dead missing after storms hit northern vietnam

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Picture: (AFP)- Flood-affected Vietnamese evacuate their village after heavy rains brought by tropical storm Kammuri pounded the mountainous northern Vietnam.

Vietnamese emergency services were today seeking to reach isolated and flood-hit northern communities after tropical storm Kammuri left at least 98 people dead and 50 missing over the weekend.

Flash-floods and landslides since Friday have cut major highway and rail links to the mountainous region bordering southern China. The heavy downpours have also knocked over trees, telephone and electricity lines.

Thousands of troops and disaster relief personnel were using trucks and boats to deliver water, food and medicines to residents in flooded villages, with some people stranded on roofs by the murky waters.

Thao A Tua, a disaster relief official from worst-hit Lao Cai province, told AFP “they have reached some areas that had been isolated for two days”.

“They are focusing on finding the people still missing. It’s bad, they are afraid they are dead and will have to recover their bodies.”

Hundreds of foreign tourists were stuck in the scenic northern region, which is dominated by ethnic minorities, but none were reported to be among those killed or the 38 people injured in the disaster.

The rains had stopped today but severed roads hampered relief efforts.