Mine Action Alert: Decades After War’s End, Unexploded Ordnance Claims Another Life in Quang Tri

Posted on May 14, 2024 View all News

A man was killed in Quang Tri Province on Monday, May 13th, 2024, when a wartime munition exploded. The incident occurred around midday in Hien Thanh Commune, Vinh Linh District.

The victim, a 34-year-old resident of Liem Cong Phuong Village, suffered fatal injuries from the blast. According to a witness, the man retrieved the munition from a pond while fishing and brought it to a nearby tarmac road, where it subsequently exploded.

The sole witness, who was tending his duck farm about 300 meters away, rushed to the scene after hearing the explosion and seeing black smoke. Having tried to provide first-aid to the victim, he then called for an ambulance to transport the victim to Quang Tri General Hospital in Dong Ha, but unfortunately, the man succumbed to his injuries.

QTMAC staffers and Vinh Linh public security officers investigating the location of the accident caused by unexploded ordnance in Hien Thanh Commune. Photo: QTMAC.

Responding to the tragedy, the Quang Tri Mine Action Center (QTMAC) dispatched a survey team to the accident site. While they found a 10-centimeter-deep crater marking the detonation on the road, no remaining fragments of the weapon were recovered. Local authorities in Vinh Linh District, based on witness accounts, believe the munition might have been a 60mm mortar round.

The victim, whose family said he had a mental disorder, was unemployed and lived with his 59-year-old mother and younger brother. Their family circumstances are described as difficult.

This incident serves as a stark reminder of the lingering dangers posed by unexploded ordnance (UXO) in areas impacted by war. QTMAC confirmed that the accident location falls between two designated hazardous areas identified for future clearance efforts. This highlights the ongoing need for explosive ordnance awareness education and continued clearance operations to ensure the safety of residents in Quang Tri Province.


Project RENEW – Restoring the Environment and Neutralizing the Effects of the War 18 Nguyen Co Thach Street, Dong Ha City, Quang Tri Province, Vietnam 0233 3858 445 tel / admin@landmines.org.vn / www.landmines.org.vn Ngo Xuan Hien, Communications & Development Manager, 0915 352 565 mobile / Email: ngoxuanhien@landmines.org.vn