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Thailand flooding update October 31, 2011: Yingluck says flooding shouldn’t worsen, but others warn Thonburi still at risk

Here’s the latest as of 6:30 p.m. today, Mon. October 31, 2011:

Summary

  • Prime Minister Yingluck said today that the flooding situation shouldn’t worsen, but Thonburi — western Bangkok — is still at risk.
  • Many of those who have been hit hardest by the floods in central Thailand and northern Bangkok are still in need of aid. (See Bangkok Post front page, below.)

New maps and images

Some new satellite images from a UN group show flooding along the Chao Phraya from northern to central Bangkok as of Oct. 24.

Below is a screen grab:

2011 10 31 unosat thailand flooding

The images are available here. A direct link to the (very large) PDF is here.

This map, below, from Longdo.com, allows users to zoom in and click on icons to see what appears to be footage from traffic cameras.

It’s a good way to get a sense of how things are looking in various parts of town.

A screen grab:

2011 10 31 thailand flooding longdo

And the map is online here.

Today’s Bangkok Post front page shows people in need of assistance:

2011 10 31 bkk post front page

(I cannot find an accompanying text story, however.)

News reports

The WSJ has this:

Floodwaters inundate the city. Businesses shut down and water-borne diseases spread. Families turn to boats rather than cars to get around.

This isn’t the latest update from Bangkok’s current flood scare — it’s from 1983, one of the many times that floodwaters have ravaged the Thai capital. Floods were so bad that year that 400 schools closed from October to early December and some areas didn’t dry out until after the New Year.

And:

Chris Baker, a Bangkok-based analyst and historian who has co-written several books about the country, said he recalls navigating Bangkok’s Sukhumvit Road — a thoroughfare for shopping and expatriate communities here — in a Thai “longtail” boat during the 1983 floods. He said his co-writer, Pasuk Phongpaichit, recalls playing every year in area floods as a child. “It was absolutely normal,” he said.

Bloomberg reports:

Hana Microelectronics Pcl is among the thousands of Thai companies with factories swamped by record floods calling on the government to help ensure it never happens again as waters slowly recede north of Bangkok.

Thailand’s credibility is on the line here,” said Hana Chief Executive Richard Han, whose Bangkok-based company makes parts used in digital music players and mobile phones. “A complete review of how to protect these industrial estates needs to be conducted and it needs government support.”

The AP says:

Thailand’s prime minister said Monday that she hopes the process of draining floodwater through Bangkok can be sped up now that peak high tides that saw the city’s main waterway rise to record levels have passed.

The Bangkok Post reports:

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra says the flooding in Bangkok should not get any worse, but Science and Technology Minister Plodprasop Suraswadi said the west of Bangkok, Thon Buri, will see more flooding.

And:

Science and Technology Minister Plodprasop Suraswadi said that between 80 and 90 per cent of the Thon Buri side of the Chao Phraya River is certain to be flooded while the water is being drained more quickly through the western floodway.

(All emphasis mine.)

The standard reminders:

Administrative note

A reminder that going forward, I may not post every day.

I will continue to share major developments and useful resources, however.

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