The Ministry of Water Resource and Meteorology yesterday issued a second announcement warning that the tropical depression that has brought cooler temperatures, strong winds and unseasonable rain in recent days could be more severe than first thought.
The announcement predicted bigger waves and slightly higher wind speeds than the ministry’s initial statement, which was released on Tuesday.
The ministry also added that the tropical depression is predicted to end today but not before producing average wind speeds of between 25 to 35 km per hour with a maximum of 54 km per hour and more rainfall across the country, especially in lowland and coastal provinces.
“According to the situation of the weather, the Ministry of Water Resource and Meteorology would like to inform authorities and people and visitors traveling by road, air and water to be aware,” the statement said.
Seth Vannareth, director of meteorology at the water resources ministry, said the tropical depression, which was located near southern Vietnam yesterday, is not severe but unusual for this time of year.
“It is not so strong but it is producing heavy rain in Cambodia, especially on the Tonle Sap and in coastal areas,” she said yesterday.
Preah Vihear Provincial Deputy Governor Sar Thavy said temperatures dropped again in the province from 16 degrees on Tuesday to 14 to 15 degrees yesterday.
“It is cold and rainy. It is colder than it was last night,” he said. “[People in the province] wear sweaters and are making campfires to warm themselves.”
Has Sareth, Kep provincial governor, reported that there was a steady drizzle, cold temperatures and persistent cloudiness in his province yesterday. He added that people and fisherman, in particular, are paying close attention to the statements released by the water resources ministry.
“They are fishermen, they have experience and are careful about this issue,” Mr Sareth said. “They are postponing their fishing.”
Fisherman Oum Deng, 46, from Preah Sihanouk province’s Stung Hav district, said that the weather depression started causing large waves and rain on Tuesday night.
“Last night, there was a storm at sea and the waves were high and big,” he said. “When it hit, the boats almost sank.”
He added that he and some other fishermen did not take their boats out to sea yesterday because of the bad weather.
“I am waiting to see the weather in the next days but I expect some of the more daring fisherman might try to go fishing,” he said.
You La, director of the Ratanakkiri provincial water resources department, said both officials and the public are watching the inclement weather closely.
“Right now people pay a lot of attention to meteorology after Typhoon Ketsana,” he said.
(Additional reporting by Christi Hang)