Flash floods hit Thailand’s southern provinces


RANONG, June 6 – Several southern provinces have been hit by flash floods, triggered by heavy rain with one death reported in a storm-related road accident in the Andaman coastal province of Krabi. 

Flooding in Ranong extends to five districts with no sign of abating while more flash floods and rains continue.

The governor met Wednesday morning with agencies concerned to assess the situation to help local residents.

In Krabi, storms hit several areas, damaging scores of houses and crops in the provincial seat.

One death was reported as a motorcycle crashed into a felled tree on a road.

A thousand small fishing boats in Satun have stayed ashore for a week due to strong winds and 2-3 metre waves in the Gulf of Thailand. Some seaside houses were damaged by smashing waves.

In Chumphon, Phinit Charoenpanit, governor reported the flood situation has extended to five districts and warned fishermen to beware of rough sea until the end of this week as rainfall continues.

A 200-metre portion of Asian Highway 41 in Sawi district is under 30-50cm water and is impassable for small vehicles.

In Ranong, flash flood hit almost all areas of Kra Buri district on Tuesday. A large number of people are stranded in their homes and officials used flat-bottomed boats to evacuate them to safe areas. Some houses were damaged by the flood.

A portion of Phetkasem Road, connecting Chumphon and Ranong, was flooded and impassable for small vehicles; some topsoil running down a mountainside blocked sections of the road.

Incessant rain triggered flash flood on Kra Buri mountain range, flowing into Chumphon canal, flooding houses, farmlands, roads in the provincial seat.

Tha Sae district was hit by a flash flood from the Tanaosri mountain range. Rescue workers helped evacuate local residents and move their belongings to higher ground.

The meteorological department on Wednesday reported a strong southwest monsoon over the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. It warned of thundershowers being likely across Thailand, with isolated heavy to very heavy rain in the South.

People in at risk areas along foothills and near waterways should beware of flooding conditions.

At risk areas include Chumphon, Surat Thani, Ranong, Phang-nga, Krabi and Trang.

Strong winds and waves of 2-3 metres are likely in the Andaman Sea and upper Gulf of Thailand. Shipping should proceed with caution; small boats should keep ashore for a few days.