The unexpected 30-minute downpour, across both Ha Noi’s urban and outlying districts, had people parking their bikes on pavements and scrambling to take shelter under the nearest roofs.
The shower, which began around 7am, led to minor flooding in several streets and residential areas, which in turn created serious traffic jam that continued even after the morning rush hours.
At Hoan Kiem (Sword) Lake in downtown Ha Noi, a popular spot for tourists, it rained as much as 50mm.
In the urban Dong Da District’s Pham Ngoc Thach Street, floodwater rose to half the height of car tyres, slowing down traffic and causing congestion, which was further worsened by motorists driving on pavements to avoid floodwater.
On Vinh Tuy Bridge that crosses the Red River, heavy rain and very strong winds toppled several bikers trying to cross it. Some of them had to stop and hold on to the railing of the bridge.
The Ha Noi Sewerage and Drainage Co. Ltd. said it has deployed a large number of workers to flooded zones to clear floodwater and put up signposts warning of danger.
All of the northern and northern central regions can expect heavy showers till June 15. Between June 14 and 16, water levels in Thao and Lo rivers have been forecast to rise as high as three to five metres.
East Sea storm weakens
The National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting said this year’s first storm over the East Sea, named Merbok, made landfall in China’s Guandong province and has since weakened into a tropical depression.
The storm will lead to heavy rain accompanied by strong gusts in the southern part of East Sea (South China Sea), as well as in the waters between the Ninh Thuan and Ca Mau provinces.