An outbreak of Leptospirosis in the southern province of Trang has claimed four lives this year, prompting health authorities to take action and urge residents not to wade in stagnant floodwaters.
The disease is caused by a bacterial infection associated with wet environments frequented by wild or domesticated animals.
Dr Teerasak Makkhun, deputy chief of the Trang Public Health Office, said on Wednesday that the Leptospirosis situation in Trang worsened this year due to rainfall and flooding, leading to 145 people becoming infected with four dying in Huay Yot, Wang Wiset, Kantang and Muang districts. Many of the infected people are from Wang Wiset, Na Yong Kantang and Palian districts, all of which were seriously affected by flooding.
The latest victim was Yeun Khongpaen, 68, a resident of Tambon Bang Dee in Huay Yot district, whose funeral was held on Wednesday at Wat Trai Samakkhee.
Yeun became infected after wading in floodwaters on December 10 to harvest grass to feed his cows. He became ill and was sent to Trang Hospital for treatment.
His son, Supit Khongpaen, 37, said he was careful not to wade in floodwaters and urged people to understand his father’s death as a cautionary tale.
He added that his father had been generally strong and wore boots to work outside but he suspected contaminated water had leaked into the boots, causing the infection.