One town and four districts in Kampong Thom province have been hit by flash floods in the rainy season so far this year, affecting more than 7,000ha, or 70sq km, of rice fields belonging to over 4,000 households, according to the provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

Stung Sen town and Kampong Svay, Baray, Taing Kork and Santuk districts were impacted, with 7,409ha of land owned by 4,509 households affected by flash floods across 24 communes as of August 1, with 3,793ha damaged.

Kun Kim, first vice-president of the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM), led a working group accompanied by provincial governor Nguon Rattanak to inspect the situation on August 1-2 to ensure that timely response measures were taken.

Kim advised the provincial Disaster Management Secretariat to continue monitoring and updating as to the impact on a regular basis to facilitate the effective provision of food, as well as rice seeds for recovery after the floods receded.

“The provincial disaster management committee is ready and has timely and effective response measures to reduce the impacts to a minimum,” he said.

Provincial agriculture department director Pen Vanrith told The Post that as of August 2, while rain continued to fall, it had eased from previous levels, as he continued to monitor affected areas.

Vanrith said his working group were assessing suitable canals in which to release the flood water to avoid serious damage to rice fields.

Rice seeds were yet to be distributed due to the high water levels, he added.

“They cannot be handed out yet. We must wait for the flood waters to recede. We will distribute rice seeds to those affected as the agriculture ministry has prepared,” Vanrith said.

Across three communes in Stung Sen town, 285ha of land belonging to 122 households were affected, of which 15ha were damaged.

In Baray district, 756ha of land owned by 226 households were damaged across three communes, while 4,425ha belonging to 2,171 households were affected over eight communes in Kampong Svay, 707ha of which were damaged.

Seven communes of Taing Kork district were affected across 966ha belonging to 583 households, of which 499ha were damaged. In Santuk district, 977ha owned by 557 households were affected, 572ha of which were damaged.