Luong Dinh Cua Street, lined with dozens of dilapidated houses and mainly populated by construction workers, remains flooded following heavy rains Thursday. Many residents have since resorted to Styrofoam rafts to move about and travel to work.
The neighborhood includes families who refused to relocate to make way for the Thu Thiem New Urban Area project, claiming their land is located out of the planned development zone.
Children in the neighborhood use makeshift rafts to get around.
“Every year’s the same, whenever it rains, it floods. The water will recede in a few days. Every time it floods, the whole neighborhood has to take time off work, clothes and vehicles are damaged by the water too, which is costly,” said Duong Tau Huong from Tra Vinh Province, 49, who has worked in Saigon the past four years.
Construction worker Thach Son Tabi from Soc Trang Province, 43, has been trapped at home the last two days.
“My family stayed up all night during the rain the other day. Water is everywhere. I just want the water to recede soon so I can move about,” said Tabi.
Ho Thi Thu Xuan, 55, from Dong Thap Province, has to stay home, unable to sell lottery tickets.
“My husband’s sick and has been confined to bed for a long time. When it floods, I have to stay home to care for him. It would be bad if he fell into the water,” she said.
With the water 30 cm deep, this family has to use a wooden ladder to navigate the guts of their abode.
A lone pillow is swept away by the rain.
Pham Thi Hong, 76, tries her best to keep her pigs and dogs out of the water’s reach.
Hong sits on her bed, waiting for life to dry back out.
Nam Rot, 29, tells her two daughters to be careful of the water.
Paying about VND1.7 million ($73) a month in rent, she and her husband are planning to move to a different location to avoid future floods.
“My house is small, flooded and full of mosquitos. It cannot contain us all so we sleep outside for now,” said Nam Rot, surrounded by her family members on a lawn in the Thu Thiem New Urban Area.
Thursday night saw Saigon’s heaviest rainfall for the entire year, with several areas recording levels up to 158 mm. A total 38 streets were flooded as a result, with many locations waterlogged for over six hours.
The southern metropolis should expect more heavy rains until mid-August, according to the Southern Regional Hydrometeorological Center.
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