Flood Continues Worse and Death Tolls Rise in Thailand and Cambodia
Hundred-of-thousand hectares of land in Thailand and Cambodia have been submerged by the torrential rain and severe floods in recent months. The mishap has impacted countless families, rice fields and claimed hundreds of lives. The flood continues to be deteriorating.
The rain in Thailand began in July, generated by the tail end of the Nock Ten typhoon, and has caused wide-spread flooding in the north, northeast and central regions of the country. The capital, Bangkok, is also affected, as it lies only two meters above sea level.
The Chao Phraya River has overflowed into roads in some areas, although the authorities have reinforced its banks to prevent more serious flooding. More than 2 million acres of farmland there are now under water, an area 11 times the size of Singapore.
“Twenty-three provinces in the lower north and central Thailand are under water and nearly 2 million people have been affected by severe floods and heavy rain,” Thailand’s Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation has said.
Farmers in affected areas have been unable to harvest their crops properly and others in non-affected areas are rushing to harvest early so as to avoid having their crops washed away when the floods hit their regions. Thailand is the world’s biggest rice exporter and its main crop of the year is normally harvested from October. Despite flooding, Thailand is forecast to produce 25.1 million tons of rice in the main crop this year, up from 24 million last year.
“Flooding this year has caused more serious damage than in previous years,”
In neighboring Cambodia, the Mekong River has overflowed, leaving large areas of Cambodia waterlogged and also affecting thousands of hectares of rice paddies, Keo Vy of the National Committee for Disaster Management told AFP. “Flooding this year has caused more serious damage than in previous years,” he said, adding that over 5,500 families have been evacuated from their homes to higher ground. see video of flooding in Cambodia