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Thailand flood kills at least 500, deadly damage getting worse

 Thai workers and residents ride a truck to cross flooded streets at the Lad Phrao district in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters ...
 Thai girls swim in floodwaters with the help of inflated tubes in a flooded neighborhood in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters la...
 Thai residents wait for a ride along flooded streets in the Lad Phrao district in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters lapped Bangk...

Thailand Floods

Thai workers and residents ride a truck to cross flooded streets at the Lad Phrao district in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters ...

Thailand Floods

Thai girls swim in floodwaters with the help of inflated tubes in a flooded neighborhood in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters la...

Thailand Floods

Thai residents wait for a ride along flooded streets in the Lad Phrao district in Bangkok, Thailand, Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. Floodwaters lapped Bangk...

Thailand's worst floods in decades have killed above 500 people on Sunday as the seemingly unstoppable waters crept deeper into Bangkok, swamping main roads and threatening the city centre.

The government said the disaster has now killed 506 people nationwide -- an increase of 60 from the figure reported a day earlier. So far no deaths in Bangkok have been reported in the official toll.

At least 20 percent of the megacity is already submerged in floodwater damage contaminated by rubbish, dead animals and industrial waste, raising fears about outbreaks of disease in the densely populated metropolis of 12 million people.

With the slowly advancing water now just a few kilometres (miles) away from Bangkok's business and tourists districts, authorities are seeking to push the floods through waterways in the east and west of the capital and out to sea.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said Saturday that the city's economic and political heartland would stay mostly dry and was only at risk of "minor and brief" flooding.

She said a six-kilometre (four-mile) flood wall of huge sandbags had been erected in northern Bangkok and more water pumps had been installed in other parts of the city to keep the downtown area dry.

The floodwaters have already inundated the busy Lat Phrao intersection on the northern edge of the city centre, forcing the closure of the Central Plaza shopping mall.

Hundreds of thousands of residents have been told to evacuate a number of Bangkok districts but many have chosen to stay despite damage and risks including electrocution, disease and lack of food and drinking water.



Updated : 2021-01-24 10:47 GMT+08:00