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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 May 2006, 07:10 GMT 08:10 UK
Thailand rescue work intensifies
Thai man by swollen river, 24/05/06
As the waters recede, people can assess the damage
Rescue workers in northern Thailand are sifting through mud and debris to search for the bodies of those killed in recent flash floods.

The floods, caused by days of torrential rain, are believed to have killed more than 100 people.

About 1,000 soldiers, together with sniffer dogs, have been drafted in to help the rescue effort.

The heavy flooding has come at the start of Thailand's rainy season, which is expected to last until October.

The country's meteorological office says further rain is likely to cause more flash floods and landslides.

Flood waters have begun to recede in the worst affected province, Uttaradit, and locals can begin to assess the extent of the damage.

So far 51 people are confirmed to have died, while more than 80 are still missing, according to Thai media.

"We fear we will find more dead under the mud when the water levels fall," said Suksunt Vanaputi, the vice governor of Uttaradit.

"The most significant obstacle is the mud, which is about two meters (six feet) thick. Most of the dead are buried under this mud, " added Bin Banloerit, a volunteer rescue worker.

The situation in towns and cities is improving, and power and running water have been restored in many areas.

But in more remote regions, there are still huge problems. Many roads have been washed away, forcing rescuers to walk long distances to carry food and water to marooned survivors.

Railway officials have begun clearing tracks and reopening sections of the line which were covered by mud and water.


SEE ALSO:
Flash floods hit north Thailand
24 May 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Logging does not raise flood risk
12 Oct 05 |  Science/Nature
Country profile: Thailand
02 Apr 06 |  Country profiles


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