Rescue officials and soldiers were rushing food to central Vietnam on Thursday, where floods have killed at least 43 people and thousands needed urgent aid, the government and state-run television said.

Thousands of people are facing hunger and need food aid in the two provinces of Ha Tinh and Quang Binh, the Vietnam Television (VTV) station said in a news bulletin.

But VTV said rescue efforts had been hampered by serious damage to roads, with many sections washed away, making it tough to deliver aid.

The station showed footage of a man, water up to his chin, receiving packs of instant noodles in the hardest-hit province of Ha Tinh, where at least 15 people have been killed after floods caused by up to 600 mm (24 inches) of rain.

The army has been using high-speed boats to take food to a limited number of flood victims in Ha Tinh, while about 60,000 people have been displaced as floods swept away or damaged their homes, the government said in its disaster report.

Floods killed three people in the neighboring province of Quang Binh and affected 200,000, of whom at least 7,500 had been evacuated to higher ground.

All north-south trains were cancelled on Thursday as many sections of track had been damaged in Quang Binh, railway officials said.

However, waters were receding in other flood-hit central provinces, leaving dirt, garbage and the carcasses of dead livestock in water supply sources, officials said.

Further south, flash floods have killed at least 20 people in the Central Highlands coffee belt and nine are missing.

The region's coffee crop was not at risk and the rains helped green coffee cherries develop before the harvesting starts in late October, traders said.

Tropical storms and typhoons often strike Vietnam from August to October. Last year, 10 storms hit the country and about 500 people were killed by floods and landslides, the government said.