6 June 2024

Seven people have drowned, one is still missing and more than 260,000 people are affected in the worst flooding in the southernmost province of Narathiwat in five decades, according to the Provincial Public Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Office.

All 13 districts of the province have been hit by floods, although the water is receding as runoffs flow downstream towards neighbouring Yala and Pattani provinces, before reaching the sea.

In areas where flooding has receded, many people can be seen cleaning their houses of mud, which came with floodwaters. Others were seen examining damage caused to their property. Flooding is also easing in Yala province

In neighbouring Pattani province, which is located downstream, the economic zone in the Mueang district was flooded yesterday, although the water is not yet very deep, ranging from 30cm to slightly over 50cm. Some roads have become impassable to small cars, as police put up signs to warn motorists. Draining water into the Pattani River is not possible because the river itself is swollen and has overflowed its banks.

In Pakaharang community, which is located by the Pattani River, more than 300 houses are inundated.

One climate expert pointed out that flood early warning systems are not efficient enough, as many people were had no advance notice of the flooding, leaving them unprepared and unable to move their valuables to higher ground in time.

Flooding in Pattani still remains serious, but the situation is expected to improve in the next few days, if there is no more heavy rain.