Thailand is suffering its worst flooding in half a century. Rescue workers are mounting an operation to prevent what they fear could be a humanitarian disaster. Nearly 270 people have already lost their lives since July in heavy monsoon rains, floods and mudslides.
More than 700,000 homes have been destroyed, and evacuation plans are being drawn up in many areas. The central province of Ayutthaya, which was just was visited by Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, has been particularly hit hard.
“We want to rescue and evacuate these people urgently. The regional army commander is now in the area along with other commanders. We are also trying to protect the industrial zone and people’s properties,” she said.
There has been a rise in skin problems due to the flooding. At least 2,000 rescue workers have been sent to Ayutthaya.
Factories have been forced to close including one Honda car plant which moved 3,000 vehicles from the area.
Around 1.4 million hectares of farmland is under water. Thailand is the world’s biggest rice exporter and has been forced to cut its forecasts.