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Washi wreaks havoc in S. Thailand

12-20-2011 12:58 BJT

BANGKOK, Dec. 20 (Xinhua) -- The tropical storm Washi which has slammed the southern Philippines and killed over 900 people is expected to cause heavy and widespread rain in the lower southern region of Thailand on Wednesday and Thursday.

The storm was forecast to move through the lower South China Sea and weaken to depression before hitting the coast of Malaysia by Wednesday, said Wanchai Sak-udomchai, director of the Meteorological Department's office in the eastern South.

The affected provinces are likely to be Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phatthalung, Songkhla, Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Trang which are located on the eastern coast.

Rough seas are expected in the Gulf of Thailand and small trawlers were advised to stay ashore during the next few days.

The Weather Bureau said the waves could be between two and four meters high in the lower part of the Gulf of Thailand.

According to Wanchai, at least two major incidents of landslides were reported in southern province of Songkhla on Sunday, one in Rattaphum and the other in Krasae Sin district. No injuries were reported in the latest landslides, he added.

Meanwhile, about 200 families in Phatthalung's Khuan Khanun district had been affected by flooding for five days, while fresh flash floods were reported on Monday in Trang's Muang district, prompting an evacuation of about 11 families in Tambon Yong Tai as authorities warn of possible worse situation.

Since November 21 through mid-December, eight provinces of Surat Thani, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phatthalung, Songkhla, Pattani, Yala, Narathiwat and Trang have been facing widespread and heavy rainfalls which caused flash floods and landslides in some areas.

The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation reported that about 150,000 households or half a million of people in those eight provinces have been affected.

In a related development, the worst deluge in more than 50 years triggered by back-to-back tropical storms and rampant monsoon rains has so far claimed 740 lives of Thai people across the country. The calamity which once impacted 65 out of 77 provinces has receded in most of the provinces but still prevails in eight provinces in central region, including the capital of Bangkok.

Editor:Zhang Hao |Source: Xinhua

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