Torrential rains have set off severe flooding in parts of South East Asia, namely Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand, Myanmar and Laos. Water levels in the Mekong Region have reached record highs as a result of heavy downpours in southern China, Laos and Thailand.
Laotian officials said the Mekong River had brought the worst flooding in history, it had rose to nearly 45 feet above its lowest level in the dry season. Thai officials have also commented that the Mekong had reached its highest level in 30 years in Northeastern Thailand.
Despite efforts at evacuating of thousands of people, the death toll and injuries continue to rise. In Northern Vietnam alone, at least 160 people have been reported killed, dozens missing and thousands driven from their homes. The heavy rain has also triggered landslides in Laos and Vietnam, killing at least 39 people according to government officials. In addition, the rising waters have brought about widespread damage to agriculture, livestock and popular tourist spots.
The New York Times, Aug 17, 2008, Death Toll Mounting as Rivers Overflow Across Southeast Asia
The Associated Press, Aug 17, 2008, Southeast Asia flooding hits cyclone-weary Myanmar