News / Asia

    Bangkok City Governor Warns Worst of Flooding to Come

    Bangkok City Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra, October 23, 2011.
    Bangkok City Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra, October 23, 2011.
    Ron Corben

    The floods hitting Thailand have so far spared the capital’s central and suburban areas of major flooding. But, the Bangkok city governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra says major inundation is forecast to hit the city by mid-week as a second wave of floodwaters hits the city from the north.

    Flood defenses

    During a visit to the city’s outer districts Sunday, Bangkok Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra said the city’s flood defenses are prepared, but face a new wave of waters now bearing down from the northern provinces of Pathumthani and Ayutthaya.

    “I think the first overflow has passed Bangkok already," he said. "It is going to the west and east and maybe will bypass Bangkok altogether. But I think the second overflow is three to four times the volume and we are bracing for that.  It will coincide two days later with a very high tide. So I think that will be the next difficult moment for us. But who knows water?"

    Soldiers use sand bags to build barriers in flooded Pathum Thani province, in Bangkok's suburbs October 20, 2011.
    Soldiers use sand bags to build barriers in flooded Pathum Thani province, in Bangkok's suburbs October 20, 2011.

    In suburban areas of Bangkok, people are hastily building outer brick walls or sandbagging their shops and homes, while hundreds of cars and vehicles have been parked on bridges and inner expressway lanes to save them from rising flood waters.

    Death toll

    The floods are part of major inundations across Southeast Asia that have claimed more than 700 lives and forced millions from their homes. Thailand’s death toll has reached 356 - including more than 50 children.  

    In Cambodia the toll has reached 247, while flooding has claimed 100 lives in Burma and more than 55 in Vietnam.

    Sukhumband, a member of the Democrat Party, denied reports of disagreements between the city and national government led by the governing Pheu Thai Party of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.

    The prime minister has faced increasing criticism over her government’s handling of the flooding. On Friday, she invoked civil emergency legislation giving her full authority over the flood crisis.

    “The problems [with the central government] have been exaggerated," he said. " We have cooperated all along, but sometimes it is different agencies that have proved difficult to deal with, for example, Metropolitan Water Works Authority. But that is OK, I am not complaining."

    The center said more than one-million people have been moved to shelters or had returned home to their native provinces due to the floods.

    Economic damage

    The economic damage continues to mount. Economists estimated the cost of the floods at $6 billion, including the inundation of more than six major industrial estates.  

    Industry Ministry officials say 14,000 factories have been hit by the floods with a loss of more than 600,000 jobs.

    Migrant workers have also been hard hit, with support groups saying 200,000, mostly from Burma, who largely work in the industrial, agricultural and service industries have lost their employment.

    Prime Minister Yingluck says it may take up to six weeks for the floods to fully recede.  But in a positive development, officials in Nakhon Sawan province, 240-kilometers north of Bangkok, say flood waters have begun to decline by as much as one meter.

    You May Like

    Self-doubt, Cultural Barriers Hinder Cambodian Women in Tech

    Longtime Cambodian tech observer Sok Sikieng says that although more women have joined profession in recent years, there remain significant factors hindering women from reaching tech potential

    Trans-Adriatic Pipeline to Boost European Energy Security

    $4.5 billion-pipeline will become operational in 2020 and will deliver gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz II field to southern Italy

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Annual festival showcases the region's harvested agriculture, fine wines and offers opportunities to experience the gentle breeze in a hot air balloon flight

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora