Heavy rains and rising river levels have caused flooding in Laos and northern Thailand as of Tuesday, September 4. Thai authorities warned off flash flooding in northern and eastern regions of Thailand and the Mekong River Commission reported flood alert levels at Nong Khai, Paksane, and Nakhon Phanom monitoring stations, with rising levels forecast through Saturday, September 8. Attempts to drain tributary rivers have been unsuccessful given the already high flood levels of the Mekong, which is 13 cm (5 in) short of overflowing in Nong Khai province. The Thai provinces of Bueng Kan, Nakhon Phanom, and Mukdahan are also at risk, as well as Bolikhamsai and Khammuane in Laos. Heavy rains in upstream provinces will add to the existing water levels in the coming days. Flash flooding and areal flooding are likely along the Thai-Laotian border.
Flooding from monsoons and tropical cyclones are common in Thailand and Laos from May through October.
Individuals present in affected areas are advised to keep abreast of local weather forecasts, anticipate localized flooding and associated road hazards, and adhere to any instructions issued by local authorities. Remember that driving or walking through running water can be dangerous - 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult - and that floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.
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