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Residents in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district use inflated tyre tubes to navigate through flooded alleyways and streets on Tuesday
Residents in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district use inflated tyre tubes to navigate through flooded alleyways and streets on Tuesday. HENG CHIVOAN

Two missing in floodwater

Two women are missing after the boat they were travelling in was overturned by strong currents in Oddar Meanchey province’s Anlong Veng district yesterday as severe floods continue to inundate much of the country, police said.

According to Pheng Phout, the police chief in Trapaing Tav commune in Anlong Veng, the boat was travelling on a river flowing out of a large lake, ferrying five people to a nearby pagoda.

Midstream, the boat’s engine stalled and the boat overturned and was carried off by the current.

Two men and one woman who were also passengers were able to swim to safety, but passengers and Anlong Veng residents Van Kim Sreng, 40, and Phan Lak, 50, were unable to make it, the police officer added.

“As of now, they are missing. We have not yet seen them dead since they fell into the water,” Phout said. “It is tragic for their family.”

The death toll from this year’s flooding has reached 52, said Keo Vy, the cabinet chief of the National Committee for Disaster Management, with Kampong Cham province province the most deadly with 18 fatalities.

Meanwhile, with 14 provinces now feeling the effects of the floods, more than 30,000 homes and 30,000 hectares of rice paddy have been affected.

However, he added, the disastrous floodwaters are beginning to recede slowly, but surely.

“Phnom Penh water levels are down, too. It is down from 10.25 metres to 10.19 metres if compared to yesterday,” Vy said, adding that even with the floods abating, residents still needed to take special care around the floodwaters that still remain.

Doung Pov, director of the Stung Treng Provincial Hall, said that water levels in his province were going down as well, dropping from 9.2 metres yesterday to nine metres today.

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