- Early assessments suggest Vietnam will avoid devastation wrought by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines
- The typhoon made landfall early on Monday morning in northern Vietnam
- Typhoon has since weakened and now a tropical storm
- Threat of floods and landslides remains as Haiyan moves into southern China
Early assessments by two aid agencies suggest that Vietnam looks set to escape the scale of death and devastation wrought by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
The typhoon made landfall early on Monday morning in northern Vietnam, packing winds of 120 kph (75 mph), before weakening to a tropical storm and heading to southern China. Haiyan has claimed up to 10,000 lives in the Philippines and flattened whole towns.
The state-run Vietnam News Agency reported that five people had been killed.
"In general, we do not anticipate that the damage will be on the scale of Haiyan in the Philippines but there will be recovery needs," said Snigda Chakraborty, country manager of Catholic Relief Services Vietnam.
"The typhoon has really weakened but it also changed its direction to where communities were not that ready," she said.
The typhoon, which had initially been forecast to hit central Vietnam, skirted the country's long coastline on Sunday before making landfall near Ha Long Bay, a popular tourist destination known for its limestone peaks that jut dramatically out of the Gulf of Tonkin.
Authorities had evacuated more than 800,000 people from provinces and cities in the storm's path.
Michael Annear, Vietnam country representative for the International Federation of the Red Cross, said the threat for heavy rain, flash floods and landslides remains as Haiyan moves into China.
"We're concerned about the rain that's predicted -- 200 mm to 300 mm -- across the northeast part of Vietnam," he said.
"Flooding and landslides are the biggest risks. Wind damage is also a risk though we have early reports that only 100 households were damaged."
China raised its highest "red" typhoon warning on Sunday, with southern Chinese provinces of Guangxi and Guangdong and the island of Hainan expected to be affected.
Six people were confirmed missing on Sunday afternoon after their cargo vessel got lost in the South China Sea, Xinhua said.
Typhoon Haiyan made landfall in the Philippines on Friday but the extent of the damage and loss of life is still becoming clear.