VIENTIANE, Oct 1 (Xinhua): Thousands of people in the southern provinces of Laos have been affected by flooding from Tropical Storm Noru.
The storm caused devastation in the southern provinces of Attapeu, Sekong and Champasak, with local authorities being ordered to evacuate people stranded, according to a report by Lao National Radio on Thursday.
In Sekong province, 28 villages experienced flooding after the Sekong River burst its banks. Two roads became impassable and landslides were reported on nine other roads, while electricity and water connections were cut off in several villages.
Rescue operations and emergency relief efforts have begun as authorities battle to assist those in need.
Lao Ministry of Labor and Social welfare has instructed local authorities to provide assistance to displaced families or those who lost their possessions in the floods.
Sanxay and Sanamxay districts in Attapeu province are among the worst affected areas and local authorities are trying to help people who are stranded by floodwaters.
In response, the Provincial Disaster Management Committee has ordered rescue teams to use boats, vehicles and personnel at their disposal to help affected villagers.
Local authorities are monitoring river levels and formulating plans to cope with the situation.
In Champasak province, 73 villages were reported to be affected, with power lines down in Champasak district and numerous houses and other properties inundated.
People living on the banks of the Mekong have been particularly affected by flooding and authorities have warned of the possibility of landslides in hilly areas.
Meanwhile, people are trying to rescue their livestock and move them to higher ground.
Local authorities were continuing to collect information about the extent of the damage.
Heavy rainfall in Laos in August triggered floods that damaged houses and infrastructure and inundated hundreds of hectares of farmland in many provinces and Lao capital Vientiane. - Xinhua