Consecutive earthquakes which have recently occurred in the area of the Song Tranh 2 Hydro-power Plant have damaged many surrounding houses, forcing locals to relocate.
An empty resettlement house
The households are located in the plant’s resettlement area and were constructed by Hydro-power Project Management Board No. 3.
Since September 3, the area of the Song Tranh 2 Hydro-power Plant has experienced more than 10 earthquakes, with the strongest recorded in the early morning of September 17. The earthquake affected the communes of Tra Doc, Tra Bui, Tra Tan and Bac Tra My Town causing the ground to shake for 10 seconds.
Ho Van Dui in Tra Doc Commune is currently preparing bamboo and rattan to set up a temporary shelter besides the resettlement house where he, his wife and five children are living.
“I am very worried by the recent tremors, so I’ve decided to construct a temporary shelter,” he said.
Ho Van Xi, another local resident, has also built a basic wooden house next to his old house because of his anxiety over the impacts of possible earthquakes on the damaged housing.
Many local people fear going to mountains to farm due to their fear of more quakes, despite the local authority encouraging them to continue the work to avoid impoverishing themselves.
Abandoning resettlement areas
Nearly 30 houses in the resettlement area have currently been abandoned because the area lacks basic necessities for daily activities.
Ho Van Son in Tra Doc Commune said he now lives five kilometres from his fields, so he has instead set up a tent on his farm land to save time. When the work is finished, he’ll return to his house.
The area lacks clean water and farming land, meanwhile the houses are in very bad condition having been seriously affected by recent consecutive earthquakes. The area has 11 water supply systems, but most of them are damaged.
Ho Van Loi, People’s Committee Chairman of Tra Doc Commune, said local authorities can not prevent people from moving when they have to face such bad living conditions, particularly in the context of the recent earthquakes.
Vice Chairman of Bac Tra My District Tran Anh Tuan said the district was collecting data on how many houses had damaged in order to conduct repairs.
Ho Van Dui taking rattan to build a temporary shelter
Workers helping Dui
Ho Van Xi in his temporary house
A damaged house
Cracked house after the recent earthquakes
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