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Dam collapses in Vietnam's central highlands

Vietnam Map

Officials from Vietnam's Gia Lai province said a dam at the Krel 2 hydropower project burst around 3 a.m. local time, damaging factories and flooding hundreds of acres of farmland.

According to Asian news sources, a cause for the dam's failure has not yet been determined, though authorities in the Ia Dom commune -- located about seven kilometers downstream from Krel 2 -- have blamed the incident on faults in its construction.

The US$6 million project was completed in 2010 and also includes 5.5 MW powerhouse.

HydroWorld.com reported earlier this year that Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung had asked the country's authorities to evaluate all of its hydropower projects in order to increase dam safety.

Nguyen's request came after the safety of Vietnam's 190-MW Song Tranh 2, 7.5-MW Dak Mek 3 and 2,400-MW Son La hydropower projects have all been brought into question in recent months.

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