VietNamNet Bridge – Another earthquake has occurred, upsetting the life of the people in Song Tranh hydropower plant area.

Getting familiar with… earthquakes


People live in fear for earthquakes.


The Song Tranh area has recently had peaceful months in 2013--until another earthquake occurred on January 12, 2014.

According to Huynh Ngoc Thieu, Head of the Bac Tra My district’s sub-department of agriculture and rural development, the earthquake measuring 2.6 on the Richter scale, did not cause death and asset toll, but has once again trembled people with fear.

As such, several earthquakes measuring 2-4.7 on the Richter scale occurred just within several months.

According to the Geophysics Institute, the latest earthquake which was weak could not cause damages. However, it was big enough to put local people in constant anxiety. Especially, the earthquake occurred after some “peaceful time,” and the government allowed the Song Tranh 2 hydropower plant to store water to the maximum height of 166 meters in November 2013.

There was heavy rain for three days in Quang Nam province. Local people living near the Song Tranh hydropower plant have got familiar with the earthquakes, and said the earthquakes in the area usually occur after a period of sun shining and then raining.

The people in Tra Giac commune of Bac Tra My district said on January 13 said they heard some explosions under the earth, while the earth shook slightly for several seconds – the signs of an earthquake.

“I clearly felt the shaking and the explosion, even though my house is 20 kilometers away from Song Tranh 2,” said Nguyen Van Hoi, a local resident.

“We feel very anxious. The Song Tranh 2 has got “problematic” again just after a short period. Meanwhile, the hydropower plant has got the permission to store water. What will happen if the dam gets broken?” he said.

Hoi and the local people have every reason to worry about their fates and the daily lives. Most of the houses in the area are not firm enough to stay safe from the natural calamities. Meanwhile, the possibility of dam getting broken is hanging over them.

Local people told not to worry

Ho Van Loi, Chair of Tra Doc Commune People’s Committee, said earthquakes have become an obsession. “We have been trying to reassure people to settle down and focus on the production,” he said.

While people have been living in the fear of earthquakes, local authorities and relevant agencies try to persuade them that no need to worry too much.

Nguyen Van Lan, Deputy Director of Song Tranh Hydropower Company, affirmed only one earthquake, 2.6 on Richter scale, occurred on January 12. He denied the fact that another earthquake took place on January 13.

“The monitoring system and the Geophysics Institute have both recognized only one earthquake,” he said.

Dr. Nguyen Xuan Anh, Head of the Geophysics Institute, says that 10 automatic monitoring stations around Song Tranh 2 have been put into operation, while 9 of these have Internet which allows to transmit data to the institute in Hanoi for the 24/24 information updating.