Experts offer suggestions to remove scripts on Halong Bay caves

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Using paint remover, paint or specialized grinders to remove scripts written on the rock and cliffs in caves in Ha Long Bay, a world natural heritage site, has been proposed by experts.

Prof. Ta Hoa Phuong, chairman of the Vietnam Paleontology - Stratigraphy Association, suggested using paint close to the color of the stone.

A geological expert said that cement could be used to cover the letters but the color must be similar to the color of the cliff.

Dr. Le Thanh Hai, from the Hi-PEC Petrochemical JSC, said that using paint in this case would make the relics look ugly. It is difficult to choose paint with the same color of the rocks.

Dr. Hai proposed two methods: using chemicals (paint remover) and a specialized grinder. However, the first method is unable to handle the letters carved on the rock. The second method is good for both painted and engraved letters but is expensive and requires the involvement of experts.

Hai’s proposals are supported by many experts. However, to put an end to the situation, the Ha Long Bay Management Board should impose heavy sanctions on violators.

The Ha Long Bay Management Board has decided to test using dissolved bat feces to delete letters and symbols written on rocks and cliffs inside caves in Ha Long Bay.

Nguyen Cong Thai, Deputy Chief of the Ha Long Bay Management Board, said last year the board invited Paul William, a geologist and lecturer at the University of Auckland (New Zealand) to Vietnam to give advice on measures to clean the letters in caves.

William’s ideas have been sent to relevant agencies for consideration. The Institute of Chemistry, Geosciences and Minerals of Vietnam and the Institute for Restoration of Monuments are sending their staff to the cave to research and find the best solutions, Thai said.

While waiting for feedback from scientists, the Ha Long Bay Management Board has tested a number of ways, including the use of bat feces to cover letters written with coal and lime and at low positions.

For the letters written with paint and tar, the board covered them with cement with the color the same as the rock and cliffs. The initial result was good, Thai said.

T. Van - Vietnamnet

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