BY SHELLY YANG
ANCHOR CHRISTINA HARTMAN
Some 280 people killed and 8 million residents affected. Thailand faces its worst flooding in 50 years. France24 has the details.
“It’s the worst monsoon rain in decades that led to deadly flooding. Much of the country has been affected. This footage is from the eastern city of Futaya. … with flooding due to hit Bangkok over the next few days, the government is doing its utmost to protect its capital and ensure the safety of the 12 million people that live there.”
The Telegraph reports, panicked residents poured into stores on buying sprees, leaving market shelves bare in preparation for the devastation.
Experts are already saying the flooding will have a heavy toll on the country’s tourism industry. For instance, the ancient city of Ayutthaya, which includes UNESCO world heritage sites, was unprepared for the rising waters. Here’s euronews with word from the city’s deputy governor.
“The situation is very severe because in previous years we were able to handle it. But the situation now is worse than in the past. We didn’t expect the very strong currents that damaged the embankment. We’ve tried our best, because this is an ancient site as well as a world heritage site.”
The floods have also affected animals. According to Reuters, 100 crocodiles escaped after the flood hit a crocodile farm, and a new report says there might be snakes in the water too. And CNN took a look at a symbolic animal of Thailand.
“I want to show you some new video of more elephants. They are stranded by floodwaters in Thailand. They have been trapped for a while now. For a week now, they have been on this bridge, slowly starving. Locals have been bringing little bit of food by rowboat but that's pretty much it. Elephants can swim but no one knows if the baby elephants would drown. “
In the midst of the chaos, some are already laying blame. The New York Times reports, meteorologists and water management experts are blaming human activity for turning a heavy monsoon into a disaster.
“The main factors, they say, are deforestation, overbuilding in catchment areas, the damming and diversion of natural waterways, urban sprawl, and the filling-in of canals, combined with bad planning. Warnings to the authorities, they say, have been in vain.”
Bloomberg points out the flood poses the first leadership test for the newly elected female Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra.
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