27 dead as Typhoon Damrey batters Vietnam

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DANANG, Vietnam: At least 27 people have died and nearly two dozen are missing after Typhoon Damrey barrelled into Vietnam, authorities said Sunday, damaging tens of thousands of homes and submerging highways 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 country’s southern coastal region, an area normally spared the typhoons that usually hit further north. More than 40,000 homes were damaged as heavy rains and 130 kph (80 mph) winds tore through the area, leaving 27 dead and 22 reported missing, according to the 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 floodwater, as toppled electricity poles and trees blocked roads. Some 300 ships were wrecked, according to the government, while local authorities said Phu Yen province’s Tuy Hoa city had never suffered such devastation before.

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