Torrential rains inundate large swathes of Thailand
Many provinces across the country, mostly in the North, were heavily flooded on Saturday following overnight downpours.
Among the provinces most affected by flooding are Phrae, Lampang, Mae Hong Son, and Phitsanulok in the North, and Prachinburi in the East.
In Phrae, a large area of the province covering Den Chai, Sung Men, and Muang districts was hit by flash floods on Saturday following heavy rainfall the previous night.
The flooding in many residential areas, including Phrae’s city area, led to traffic congestion and damage to the local economy.
In Den Chai district, flash floods caused damage to the houses. Some residents failed to move their belongings to higher ground. Rescue workers were called to evacuate bed-ridden patients and elderly people from their flooded homes.
Suthinee Khaodee, a 53-year-old resident of Den Chai district, said that flooding came early this year and was worse than before.
In Phitsanulok, local authorities warned that the Yom River could breach its banks as its level kept rising on Saturday. This resulted from the high volume of rain upriver, in Phrae and Sukhothai provinces. Surplus water was also released from the Mae Mok Reservoir in Lampang and this contributed to the higher water levels in the Yom River.
Low-lying farming areas and rice fields in Phitsanulok were flooded as the river overflowed its banks, but this year’s rice crop was already harvested.
In the northern province of Lampang, overflow from the Wang River flooded a road in Ko Kha district, making it impassable for small vehicles.
Two villages in the district were cut off after their only road link was flooded. More than 300 households were affected. Authorities rushed to send assistance to the trapped villagers. Some residents said the flooding was “the worst in 10 years”.
In Mae Hong Son province, which borders Myanmar, downpours and strong winds on Friday night felled trees and electricity poles, and cut off a bridge and a section of a road.
A landslide in Mae Sariang district forced authorities to close a section of a road for repair, which led to severe traffic congestion.
In the eastern province of Prachinburi, days of torrential rains caused severe flooding in an old-market community in Kabin Buri district, affecting about 50 households.
Flash floods were also reported in Prachantakham district, affecting 35 households, according to local authorities.