Sep 28 2011
With the recent heavy rains in Chiang Mai itself and the Ping River filling up with run-off further north the river finally carried out its threat to burst it’s banks around 4.00 pm today, (see VDO clip below). Water is now infiltrating into the night bazaar and Chinatown/Worarot area as well as suburbs close to the river such as Nong Hoi but river levels continue to rise.
Large areas of districts further north such as Mae Tawan, Mae Taeng, Chiang Dao are already underwater so conditions in Chiang Mai City are expected to worsen considerably during the night with a surge in the Ping River estimated to reach the city later this evening. Furthermore authorities warn that they will have to do a ‘controlled release of water‘ held in certain dams north of Chiang Mai due to dangerously high levels so by morning fears are that floods will have reached the catastrophic 2005 levels (see report here).
(Video by http://www.all-thailand-exp.com/)
In 2005 flooding covered much of eastern part of the city between the river and the train station and extended well up Loi Kroh and Tha Pae Roads in the other direction with over 1m of water in the night bazaar.
Train services from Bangkok are cancelled though flights are operating as normal. We have heard reports that the Chiang Mai – Fang and Chiang Mai – Chiang Rai roads are cut off though whilst we can’t substantiate the former the latter was still passable this afternoon.
Anyway the proverbial’s likely going to hit the fan tonight so good luck to everyone and sincerest commiserations to the many people already affected. We’ll have some photos for you as soon as day breaks and further updates as we get them.
(As of 7.00 pm there was around 30-40 cms of water in the night bazaar area but vehicles were still circulating along Tha Pae Rd and over Narawat Bridge. (see map))
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