Beware of a Rising Mekong This Month


People who live along the Mekong River across the country should be aware of possible rising water levels this month and other severe conditions due to continued rains and isolated heavy rains.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment’s Meteorology and Hydrology Department made the warning yesterday.

A department official told Vientiane Times yesterday that water levels are rising because of heavy rains in northern Laos, which could cause flooding in the lowlands of some districts in Borikhamxay and Khammuan provinces.

There will be an estimated 330 millimetres of rain in Vientiane this month, while in Pakxan, Thakhaek, and Pakxe districts there could be between 500-600 millimetres.

The official said the department was monitoring weather conditions constantly, and was working in collaboration with the meteorology and hydrology departments in other countries. When Mekong levels increase above 11 metres in lowland areas in Vientiane or other extreme weather conditions are forecast, we immediately send out warnings through various meteorology and hydrology sectors as well as websites, radio broadcasts, television and media agencies, to let people know what’s happening, the official added.

The rain around Vientiane capital yesterday had been moderate but there had been heavy rains in Xieng Khuang, Xayaboury and Huaphan provinces.

However, there has been limited rainfall in the past month while temperatures have risen above average over the last two weeks in Vientiane, Luang Prabang and Xayaboury provinces, for the past nine to 12 days in Bokeo and Savannakhet provinces, and for the last week in Huaphan, Borikhamxay, Khammuan, Saravan, Champassak and Xekong provinces.

Closely following the weather forecast reports should remain a daily responsibility, especially those people who are living along the banks of the Mekong River, the department official said.

Source: Vientiane Times