Flooding Moves South After Hitting Kratie and Stung Treng

The level of the Mekong river in Kratie and Stung Treng provinces is subsiding as flooding has started to move south through Kompong Cham, already claiming the lives of three people there, officials said yesterday. Since flooding began last week, more than five people have been killed, 8,400 families have been affected, and more than 70 forced to evacuate their homes.

Mao Hak, director of the Water Re­­sources Ministry’s hydrology de­partment, said that, as predicted, wa­ter levels began to drop below emergency levels in Kratie yesterday and in Stung Treng on Satur­day. How­ever, the water level in Kom­pong Cham province is rising, he said.

Water levels there increased from 15.11 meters Saturday to 15.21 me­ters yesterday, but are ex­pected to go down to 15.15 meters today, ac­cording to a ministry statement is­sued Satur­day. It added that it was unlikely that flooding would reach emergency levels of 15.5 meters.

In Phnom Penh, river levels were expected to reach 9.36 meters yesterday, up from 9.28 meters on Sat­urday, and are expected to rise to 9.45 meters by Tuesday.

“The flood emergency level is 10.5 meters high,” Mr Hak said, ad­ding that it was unlikely that such levels would be reached.

Kompong Cham deputy provincial governor Lun Limthai said that two boys, aged 11 and 12, drowned Friday and Saturday in Kang Meas and Kroch Chhmar districts.

“Water is rising slowly. If the wa­ter level is between 15.2 meters and 15.5 meters, water will overflow in all the creeks, rivers and lakes in the province,” he said.

Kroch Chhmar district police chief Lay Nguon said that another 8-year-old girl drowned yesterday after falling into floodwaters in Memot district’s Dar commune.

Kratie provincial administration chief Khan Chamnan said that while flood levels are subsiding, a total of two people have died and 30 families have been forced to evacuate their homes.

About 3,600 hectares of rice pad­dy is flooded and 79 km of roads have been inundated, he added.

(Additional reporting by Phal Sokpheary)


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