Homeless families could suffer a second round of flooding

Breaking News August 17, 2018 08:53

By Vientiane Times
Asia News Network
Sanamxay district, Attapeu province

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About 1,000 people now camping in the two-storey Sanamxay upper secondary school after they were made homeless by the devastating flood last month may have to move to new shelters if the current heavy rains cause further flooding.



District Governor Mr Bounhom Phommasane told reporters yesterday morning that floods had not yet reached the school but the water was not far away.

Families made homeless by last month's inundation are also living in two primary schools.

"These two schools should remain safe because the water is some distance away, but we still have to monitor the situation closely," Mr Bounhom said. 

If the secondary school becomes flooded, the two primary schools are next in line. 

Any evacuees will then have to take shelter at the District Administration Office, which is on higher ground.

Rain began here in earnest a few days ago, submerging two bridges in the centre of Sanamxay.

The level of water in the Xepian and Xekong rivers has risen and is set to rise further after the Xekhaman 1 Power Co., Ltd. releases water from its dam on Thursday morning.

District officials have prepared boats to take people out of shelters if flooding occurs.

About 7,000 people who had to leave their flooded homes following the collapse of the Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy dam last month are now living in shelters.

Mr Bounhom said part of the district's border with Phuong district was flooded and people have now left that area. Some of the people who live there are sweetcorn farmers, but they have returned to their homes until the water recedes.

The road to Sanamxay district from the provincial capital has been cut off since Tuesday so people are travelling in small wooden boats or army helicopters.

Travelling by speedboat, a third group of visiting officials from state-run media agencies arrived at the Attapeu Press Centre on Thursday morning, after a journey of two hours.

Because of the flooded road, the group spent two nights in the provincial capital Samakhixay district before arriving in Sanamxay, where they replaced the second group of media staff who are keeping the rest of the country informed of developments.

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