Millions affected by floods in Cambodia

Cambodia is experiencing some of the worst  flooding in a decade caused by heavy monsoon rains and strong typhoons which have lashed the whole of the Southeast Asian region. According to Cambodian officials, at least 150 have been killed and some 270,000 households affected in 17 out of 24 provinces since floodwaters started to rise in August.  Tens of thousands of acres of rice paddies have been flooded just before the harvest raising questions about this years’ crop and the economic impact not only for farmers but also the country as a whole. Some 10% of this years’ harvest may have been destroyed, officials estimate.

Local officials and aid agencies such as the Cambodian Red Cross have been scrambling to help evacuate people in affected areas and provide basic items such as food and water. But as an ECHO assessment team discovered during a recent assessment mission to Kampong Cham province, the flooded areas are so vast that it is difficult to reach all villages. Some have been completely cut-off from the outside world by the rising flood waters.  The team spent hours with the Cambodian Red Cross criss-crossing the country-side in small motorboats visiting small villages which have not received any assistance.  Many inhabitants did not want to leave,  either because they did not want to abandon their homes and possessions or because the flood waters rose so quickly that they feel safer in their homes than risk being swept away by the floods.  Some are living in their homes although the water is knee deep. Others have set up temporary shelters close by on bridges which stick out of the flood plains like small islands.
There are growing fears of  water borne diseases.As flood waters recede in some provinces the extend of the damage becomes more apparent as roads have been washed away, irrigation canals filled with mud, and private homes businesses damaged.

Photo Credit: Thearat Touch, Cecile Pichon, Evangelos Petratos  EU/ECHO

Story: Mathias Eick, Regional Information Officer

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CNN iReport


One thought on “Millions affected by floods in Cambodia

  1. the world is also affected by the flood; however, the people mostly affected are rice farmers. with crops ruined, there will be no harvest this year for most in northern cambodia. i am greatly sadden for those experiencing this misfortune.

    what will happen when the floodwaters recede? can some crops be salvaged? i hope the road to complete recovery is a short one. on the brighter side of life in srok khmer, i hear fish is plentiful right now.

    here in the states, we are feeling the ripple effect, a 50 pounds bag of rice has gone up 8$ at some markets – that is, a 25% increase. Will the price of rice continue to rise as a result? what do you think vorleak? for me, i’m not so sure anymore. i’ll just have to wait and see.

    thank goodness for the state of kampuchea to assist flood victims with immediate needs, but what will the flood victims do when the prime minister’s 25 kilos bags of rice and other goods are gone? i hope there is more to come

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