Several northern Thai provinces under deep floodwater

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PHICHIT, Sept 8 —  Several northern Thai provinces are now devastated by severe flooding and residents, especially farmers, are suffering as floodwaters continue to rise, officials said Sunday. 

In Phichit province, floods inundated more than 2,000 rai growing fragrant rice in Sam Ngam district which is already affected by forest runoff  from Kamphaeng Phet province and from heavy downpours in the past few days, officials said.

They said the heavy forest runoff has damaged a sluice gate in one village, making it difficult to control water from the runoff.

The excess water then covered farmland and damaged rice stalks which had started to ripen.

Farmers later complained to the Sam Ngam district officer, urging him to speed up draining floodwater from their farms to the Yom River as quickly as possible.

Farmers still hoped that if floodwater could be drained to the river within the next one or two days, most  of their crops could survive, officials said.

The water level in the Chao Phraya River in Ang Thong province is now reaching a critical level, forcing governor Pawin Chamniprasart to discuss with concerned agencies, including the army, on ways to tackle the flooding problem.

Of 205 canals in Ang Thong, the water level in 17 of them is now almost overflowing while another four need to solve problems immediately, officials said.

A ‘task force centre has been established in the province to deal with the emergency.

The situation in Ang Thong’s Pa Mok district is also worrisome.

People living along the banks of Chao Phraya River are concerned after finding that the river has risen rapidly. Many have already moved their valuables to higher ground.