Water in the Hoa Binh reservoir dropped to the 79.25m mark on 23 May , 0.75m lower than the dead level. Should the water level fall to below 75m, the plant will have to cease operation.

Although some 200m3/sec is currently flowing into the reservoir – allowing half of the plant’s eight turbines to operate – only rains in upper reaches can improve the situation.

Currently, demands for electricity in this region are increasing by 30% year on year. In an attempt to bolster power supplies during the dry season, the government has ordered a 50% cut in public lighting but restrictions are likely to remain in force until reservoir levels have significantly improved allowing all of the Hoa Binh turbines to function.