Thailand announces holiday due to floods

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THAILAND (BDCi) – Thaliand announced a five-day holiday on Tuesday to give people the chance to escape floods closing in on Bangkok.

The Prime minister warned that the capital could face up to five feet of water if the barriers break.

The cabinet declared October 27-31 a holiday in Bangkok and 20 provinces affected by the country’s worst flooding in 50 years. Weekend high tides in the Gulf of Thailand could complicate efforts to divert water from the low-lying capital.

Financial markets will remain open.

As water levels soared, some of those already evacuated were preparing to leave again, with 4,000 people sheltering at a Bangkok airport told they would be moved to the eastern province of Chon Buri.

The floods have killed at least 366 people since mid-July and disrupted the lives of nearly 2.5 million, with more than 113,000 in shelters and 720,000 seeking medical attention.

Authorities are working around the clock to pump out water around the east and west of Bangkok but with water levels high in the Chao Phraya river that winds through the city raise the risk of high floods in the commercial heart when high tides come.

By: Natania Levine
Courtesy: reuters.com
Photo: reuters.com
25 October 2011

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