Hanoi, Vietnam (AP)-Officials said the typhoon was the strongest typhoon in Vietnam in two decades. It was blown away from Vietnam on Thursday after causing landslides, sinking ships and providing electricity to at least 1.7 million people. State media said at least 35 people were killed and more than 50 people are missing.
Rescuers are directly concerned with three villages in the central part of the country, where landslides have killed at least 19 people and are suspected of burying more than 40 others in thick mud and debris.
Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung went to a landslide site where soldiers were trying to clear debris with bulldozers. He ordered the officers to urgently send more troops to assist in this work.
“We must reach the landslide site in the fastest way. First, send more soldiers, and then we can buy large machines there. We must reach the area in various ways, including the use of helicopters.”
There were also 12 fishermen among the victims whose boat sank on Wednesday as Typhoon Moraf approached at wind speeds of 150 kilometers (93 miles) per hour. Another 14 fishermen are still missing.
Officials said the death toll across the country could rise because some areas cannot report details of the damage and casualties.
Rescuers dug up eight bodies in Trafan village in Quang Nam province on Thursday morning, where the hillside collapsed. The official Vietnamese news agency reported that with the approach of the typhoon, the victims have sought refuge in the community.
In Tra Leng village, about 45 kilometers (28 miles) away from Tra Van, another landslide buried a community with several houses and about 45 people living in it. Vietnam News said four people escaped, while rescuers recovered eight bodies and later survived four villagers, including two children, trapped in a burial house.
The survivors pulled out of the thick brown fragments were taken to the hospital with broken arms and legs and other injuries. Rescue workers continue to frantically search for at least 33 buried people.
Tra Leng was initially unreachable due to road damage, flooding and other landslides, but by Thursday afternoon, the government disaster response team was able to open a road with bulldozers and excavators, and brought more rescuers and heavy equipment.
The Vietnamese news said that as troops scrambled to rescue those buried in Tralam, another part of the rain-soaked mountainside cascaded down into a pile of mud in the nearby Phuoc Loc district, killing three people and trapping them. Up them.
Considering the unstable hillside, it is recommended that other villagers of Phuoc Loc flee to safety.
The three landslide-affected areas are located in the hardest-hit mountainous area of Guangnan Province. The coastal areas of the province can still recover from the floods earlier this month. The floods killed 136 people and destroyed hundreds of houses.
Quang Nam is a place for tourists to visit ancient towns and Hindu temples, located about 800 kilometers (500 miles) southeast of Hanoi.
Elsewhere, when the typhoon struck the coast violently on Wednesday, four trees in Quang Nam and Gia Lai provinces were killed by fallen trees and collapsed houses.
Official media said that the navy search and rescue vessel found the bodies of 12 of the 26 fishermen whose boat sank near Binh Dinh Province on Wednesday.
Vietnam News said that the typhoon blew up from the roofs of about 56,000 houses and caused a massive power outage in Quang Ngai Province, where 1.7 million people stayed overnight in the dark and were hit by the typhoon.
At least 40,000 people were evacuated to emergency shelters, and the authorities closed offices, factories and schools to prevent casualties.
The typhoon killed at least 16 people in the Philippines and then crossed the South China Sea to Vietnam.
Associated Press writer Jim Gomez (Jim Gomez), based in Manila, Philippines, contributed to this report.