The Thai Red Cross is responding in force to the worst floods to hit the country in over 50 years. Heavy monsoon rains, coupled with the remnants of tropical storms and typhoons from the South China Sea, have resulted in heavy flooding. To date, 320 people have been killed and 2.45 million have been affected.
The floods washed down from the northern provinces of Chiang Mai, Nan and Nong Khai to reach Thailand’s central plains. The Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani provinces have already been affected, and the floods now pose a serious risk to central Bangkok. Further rain continues to swell the floodwaters.
So far, the Thai Red Cross has provided help in many ways across 34 of the affected provinces. Volunteers and staff have reached over 500,000 people with relief and support, distributed over 133,400 relief kits, 122,200 packs of bottled water and 440 shelter boxes. Each shelter box supports a family of ten and consists of a tent with raised floor, bedding, kitchen utensils and other daily necessities.
The Thai Red Cross has been evacuating people using 16 flat bottomed boats. Three mobile health units – boats carrying a doctor, pharmacist and nurse – have been reaching isolated communities, and 25 fibreglass boats are being used to transport people and supplies.
The Thai Red Cross has deployed water purifier trucks and is providing floating toilets. As well as providing some ready meals, it is also cooking 4,800 hot meals a day from a mobile kitchen.
Having received overwhelming support from within the country, the Thai Red Cross have not requested outside assistance. However, the British Red Cross continues to monitor the situation closely.