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Bangkok braces for flooding in its suburbs Special

By D Scott Rosenberg     Oct 7, 2011 in World
Bangkok - As seasonal monsoon rain worsens because of a series of tropical depressions over Thailand, flooding is occurring in wide areas of its central, northern and northeastern regions.
The rains have continued over the last couple of days, worsening flood conditions between Ayutthaya and the mouth of the Chao Praya River, south of Bangkok. Conditions are expected to increase in severity for several more days. Land transportation is disrupted in these areas, with the Asian Highway, the main highway when traveling north out of Bangkok, impassable because of flooding.
As of October 7, according to press releases from Thai government sources, including the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation, portions of 54 highways are closed. The American Embassy through a "Warden Emergency Message" emailed a cautionary message to U.S. Citizens on the flooding situation.
Ewa Narkiewicz, Communications Director for the Elephant Stay Program in Thailand's ancient capital of Ayutthaya (a UN World Heritage site), about 76 kilometers north of Thailand, said that water had reached the second level of the house that they had moved to from the elephant kraal where their program operates.
homes of elephant handlers (mahouts) flooded at Elephant Stay Program in Ayutthaya
homes of elephant handlers (mahouts) flooded at Elephant Stay Program in Ayutthaya
Elephant Stay Program
"We've never seen anything like this before, Ewa said. "Some of our elephants are still stuck at the kraal which is surrounded by water at least a meter and a half deep. There are soldiers everywhere trying to shore up flood dikes which have broken through. We had to shut down our program and we are moving to the center of the city, hopefully flood waters will not reach that far in-land."
In Bangkok itself, heavy rains in the northern part of the capital caused floods on Chaeng Watthana Road in front of the government complex, Vibhavadi Rangsit Road and Ram Intra Road at Laksi roundabout from Wednesday night to early this morning (10-07-2011).
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