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Floods force families to flee

Sen David / Khmer Times Share:
This file photo shows high water levels encroaching on homes. Sa Borey

Authorities evacuated 100 families in Preah Vihear province yesterday as rainstorms continued to add to rising water levels.

National Committee for Disaster Management spokesman Keo Vy on Tuesday issued a warning to both Preah Vihear and Kampong Thom provinces as rainstorms steadily increased water levels in the Stung Sen river.

Mr Vy said 100 families were evacuated from a village in the province yesterday due to heavy flooding. He added that 3,000 hectares of farmland had also been inundated.

“Almost all provinces in Cambodia are hit by floods now, but some are not yet in serious condition,” Mr Vy said.

“It’s just the one area in Preah Vihear where evacuations were necessary, in a village near the Dangrek Mountains.”

Two tropical storms sweeping the region are complicating matters, Mr Vy added.

He said Oddar Meanchey province has also suffered from flooding, forcing officials to take excavators and dig holes to protect the Tamok Bridge and reservoir.

In Stung Treng province, the provincial hall has alerted villagers in Kbal Romeas and Sre Kor communes that severe floods may be coming due to a combination of two factors.

Firstly, the Lower Sesan II dam has closed its doors for technical tests, and secondly, heavy rainfall is expected to spread to the communes soon.

“Cooperate with local authorities to move to a safe place,” the warning told residents. “Transport your belongings for safe-keeping as well.”

More than 100 families in the two communes have still not accepted compensation from the dam’s builder and moved homes.

Sre Kor commune chief Seak Mekong said: “For villagers that don’t leave and floods come, they have bamboo rafts to escape.”

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