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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Flooding claims six more, while fears grow for officer

Children travel down a flooded laneway on a makeshift raft earlier this week in Kandal province’s Muk Kampoul district
Children travel down a flooded laneway on a makeshift raft earlier this week in Kandal province’s Muk Kampoul district. Heng Chivoan

Flooding claims six more, while fears grow for officer

Six people across the country, including two young children, died in flood-related incidents yesterday, bringing the total number killed so far this rainy season to 17, according to government figures.

Keo Vy, cabinet director at the National Committee for Disaster Management, said that fatalities were recorded yesterday in Kampong Cham, Kandal and Prey Veng provinces.

Overall this rainy season, “three people [have] died in Stung Treng, three in Kratie, one in Tbong Khmum, six in Kampong Cham, two in Kandal and two in Prey Veng provinces,” Vy said.

The two children killed in Kampong Cham yesterday drowned while playing in the water flooding their homes, said Ma Chenda, Koh Sotin district police chief.

“At 10:05 am, Nay Vannut, a 4-year-old boy, drowned, and Khoeun Lisa, a 1-year-old baby girl, drowned at noon,” Chenda said.

Chenda blamed the two fatalities on the “carelessness” of the children’s parents.

In Prey Veng province, 54-year-old Mong Mun, a Romlech commune police officer, remained missing for the second day yesterday, according to officials.

Long Bunthoeun, Sithor Kandal district police chief, said Mun was initially reported missing at 11:05am on Wednesday after he was seen falling into fast-moving water while helping people put soil into bags to fend off the floods.

“From the incident to now we have not found him and now we are asking . . . people to help with the search,” he said.

According to Vy, the cabinet director, the number of people evacuated because of the flooding rose to 6,286 yesterday.

And, in addition to the cost on lives, tens of thousands of hectares of rice fields and other crops have been destroyed in the flooding.

About “44,069 hectares of rice fields and 5,617 hectares of secondary crops have been affected”, Vy said. “The flooding has affected 10 provinces, but Prey Veng and Kandal provinces are being affected the most.”

Prime Minister Hun Sen appealed to local authorities to raise awareness about the dangers of flooding and for people across the country to act with precaution.

“We demand that people everywhere raise their awareness and appeal for people to be wary . . . because the authorities cannot intervene in all the matters for the people. For example, do not leave your child who can’t swim at home alone. If this is avoided, there will be no deaths,” he said.

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