Three Bago wards evacuated due to floods

Aug 15, 2008 (DVB), Flooding in Bago division caused by heavy rainfall has been exacerbated by the opening of reservoir gates upstream of the river, forcing residents of three wards to evacuate the area.

A resident of Bago division said communities living along the river banks were worst affected.

"The authorities decided to open up the gates to a reservoir located near Bago when the river was already flooding due to the heavy rain, which had also caused water to overflow from the reservoir," the resident said.

"The worst-affected places were Kyuntharyar, Kyukgyisu and Gongsaykyun wards located along the river bank," he said.

"People who live in these wards are now being evacuated."

Another Bago resident said the water had flooded the streets, making it impossible for motorbikes and cars to travel.

"It’s up to kneel-level in my house in downtown Bago," the resident said.

"The bus terminal is submerged as well and authorities are making announcements in town on loudspeakers that the water level will get even higher," he said.

"People evacuated from the river bank are being given temporary shelter in monasteries in town."

The Burmese government’s Department of Meteorology and Hydrology have recently issued flood warnings in Bago, Pha-an, Shwe Kyin and Madauk.

An official on duty at the DMH said the water level had started decreasing in some areas and he did not expect the situation to get any worse in other locations, where flooding is common at this time of year.

Reporting by Nan Kham Kaew

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