Friday, December 16, 2005

Moderate flooding has hit the province of Nakhon Sri Thammarat in southern Thailand. Moderate to heavy rain persists in the area, further exacerbating the flooding conditions. The northeast monsoon has intensified the flow of rainfall-laden air from the Gulf of Thailand. Torrential rains have been plaguing the nine southernmost provinces of the country for nearly two weeks and further downpours are forecast for later this week.

Thung Song District in Nakhon Sri Thammarat province is experiencing waist-high floodwaters in downtown shopping areas. Transportation has ground to a halt in affected areas. In Songkhla Province, the government has called for steps to be taken to prevent further flooding of the commerial district of Hat Yai. Rail tracks have been lifted in some areas to permit flood waters to leave the city, and the Thai Navy has been ordered to take part in relief efforts.

In Muang District of Nakhon Sri Thammarat, many roads have been closed and sandbags are being deployed to help affected businesses. Schools throughout the province have been closed because of flooding conditions. Other provinces, including Phattalung, Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat, Trang, Sukhothai and Satun have experienced similar problems with high tides and heavy rain paralysing much of the region.

The Meteorological Department of the Thailand Ministry of Information and Communication Technology issued a weather advisory concerning the flooding, “People in the lower South and navigators in the Gulf of Thailand should exercise caution and small boats should stay from December 15 until December 18.” It is reported that this has left some tourists stranded on smaller resort islands in the Gulf of Thailand.

Across the border in Malaysia, three are reported to have died and over 10,000 been evacuated as a result of the flooding.