WORLD CUP IN­SIDE 16 killed, feared dead in strong mon­soon

GUESS YOUR TEAM AND WIN PRIZES At least 16 peo­ple have died or are feared dead in ac­ci­dents trig­gered by the past week of heavy rain and strong winds through­out most of the coun­try, of­fi­cials said.

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - Front Page - MYAT MOE AUNG TOE WAI AUNG MAUNG ZAW news­room@mm­times.com

THE strong mon­soon that has gen­er­ated a week of heavy rains and strong winds has caused wide­spread flood­ing across eight states and re­gions, land­slides in some towns and huge waves in rivers, killing at least 12 peo­ple, while four oth­ers re­main miss­ing and are feared dead.

The De­part­ment of Dis­as­ter Man­age­ment (DDM) on Thurs­day said flood­ing across the re­gions and states killed seven peo­ple and dis­placed more than 5000 oth­ers.

The states and re­gions af­fected by flood in­clude Sa­gaing, Magwe, Bago, Aye­yarwady, Kayin, Rakhine, Shan, and Ka­yar.

The de­part­ment said se­vere flood­ing hit Magwe, where six peo­ple died, while one ca­su­alty was re­ported in Sa­gaing.

Daw Phyu Lae Lae Tun, di­rec­tor of DDM, said the de­part­ment is pre­par­ing as­sis­tance for peo­ple dis­placed by the flood. She said her of­fice pro­vided K300,000 (US$220) for the fam­i­lies of each vic­tim, while up to K100,000 was given to each fam­ily whose houses were dam­aged.

The strong winds and heavy rain also dam­aged eight re­li­gious build- ings, 39 bridges and roads, and around 7000 acres of farm­land. Wa­ter in 14 dams was re­ported to ex­ceed the dan­ger level, risk­ing spillovers that could cre­ate flood­ing in other ar­eas.

In Man­dalay Re­gion, the heavy rain and a sub­se­quent land­slide killed five peo­ple early Thurs­day in Aung Thit Lwin ward of Mo­gok town, ac­cord­ing to a lo­cal res­cue group.

The land­slide oc­curred be­fore dawn and buried a fam­ily. Among the dead were one woman and four men in­clud­ing a child in the sev­enth grade, res­cuers said.

The town also ex­pe­ri­enced a land­slide last year in which one per­son died.

Another land­slide at Ma­soeyein monastery in Min­tadar ward, also in Mo­gok, caused the col­lapse of a sep­tic tank, which in­jured sev­eral peo­ple, res­i­dents said.

In Yangon, a boat car­ry­ing 12 peo­ple cap­sized late Wed­nes­day af­ter it was bat­tered by strong winds and waves, leav­ing four peo­ple miss­ing and feared dead. Res­cuers had yet to re­cover any of the miss­ing as of late Thurs­day.

Ac­cord­ing to po­lice, the mo­torised boat, which was tak­ing pas­sen­gers from Sint Oh Dan port in Latha town­ship to Dala town­ship, suf­fered a me­chan­i­cal fail­ure while ne­go­ti­at­ing the swollen Yangon River. It was swept by huge waves, caus­ing it to cap­size near Sule jetty’s dock.

A ground fis­sure has ap­peared in Parsaung vil­lage of Hkamti town­ship in Sa­gaing af­ter over a week of heavy rain, res­i­dents said. Over 70 fam­i­lies in the hilly vil­lage feared that con­tin­ued heavy rain could trig­ger a land­slide.

“In the morn­ing on Thurs­day, we no­tice a fis­sure that cuts across the vil­lage, and if some­thing hap­pens, a school and houses will be af­fected,” said U Kyaung Chan, the vil­lage ad­min­is­tra­tor.

Ac­cord­ing to the DMH weather fore­cast, the mon­soon is still strong in the Bay of Ben­gal and An­daman Sea. It said heavy rain is ex­pected to con­tinue in some states and re­gions, but added the weather will im­prove in the next two days in cen­tral re­gion of Myan­mar.

The DMH warned peo­ple liv­ing near rivers to be alert for flash floods and those in hilly re­gion to be alert for land­slides.

A search and res­cue team leaves Sint Oh Dan jetty on Thurs­day to search for four peo­ple who went miss­ing af­ter a mo­torised ferry boat cap­sized on the Yangon River late Thurs­day. Photo: Kaung Htet

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