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Areas south of Mekong river affected by floods

Mom Kunthear / Khmer Times Share:
A row of homes in Stung Treng province hit by floods. MOWR

The Water Resources and Meteorology Ministry yesterday warned that as water levels begin to decrease in the northern portions of the Mekong river over the next two days, people living in areas downstream will be affected as excess water flows north to south.

Parts of the Kingdom have been hit by a series of floods affecting northern areas around the Mekong river, including the provinces of Stung Treng, Kratie and Kampong Cham.

The ministry yesterday said in a press release that even though hydrological stations located in the three provinces have recorded decreasing water levels, levels downstream will increase over the next four to five days as excess water flows south.

“The ministry would like to inform everyone that the water levels in Stung Treng, Kratie and Kampong Cham will reduce in the next one or two days,” it said, adding that water levels at some southern hydrological stations have already begun to increase.

“On Sunday, the water level at the Koh Khel hydrological station was at 7.5 metres, 0.1 metre higher than the danger zone,” it added. “The water level at the Koh Khel hydrological station will increase to 7.75 metres for the next four to five days.”

It said as water flows south, people living downstream could be affected.

“The positive point is that water will flow through creeks, into plains and lakes,” it said. “The negative point is that there will be excess water, which could affect villages and infrastructure – some riverbanks could collapse.”

The excess water has also already affected southern parts of Kratie.

Kratie Governor Va Thorn yesterday said National Road 73 from Chhlong district to Kratie city has been temporarily closed because it was flooded due to water flowing from the northern areas of the Mekong river.

“To ensure safety and avoid accidents, the provincial administration has suspended all travels along this road from Saturday until the water is gone,” Mr Thorn said.

Yesterday, the provincial disaster management committee said in a report that a total of 5,324 houses, 23 schools, two health centres and 10 pagodas have been hit by floods.

“One thousand and forty-eight families were evacuated to safe places,” the committee said. “The districts of Sambor, Prek Brasab, Chetr Borei and Chhlong have been affected by floods. Kratie city has also been affected.”

Men Kong, spokesman for Stung Treng Provincial Hall, yesterday said even though water has decreased in the Mekong river, water in the southern Sekong river has increased.

Mr Kong said there are now more than 7,000 affected families, including 2,000 that have been displaced.

“More than 7,000 families have been affected,” he said. “More than 2,000 families were evacuated to safe places.”

Mr Kong said provincial authorities are monitoring developments throughout affected areas in Stung Treng.

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