VIENTIANE, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) — The north and central regions of Laos have been put on alert for heavy downpours after weather forecasters warned that Typhoon Mangkhut and Tropical Storm Barijat are expected to pass over Laos on coming Monday and Tuesday.
Areas at high risk of damage from storm activity include the capital and the provinces in central and northern Laos. The weather alert was issued by the Lao Meteorology and Hydrology Department on Friday.
Typhoon Mangkhut is now causing widespread damage in the Philippines and is on course to hit China, local daily Vientiane Times reported on Saturday. The storm is heading westward at a speed of 20 km per hour and could cross Vietnam and north and central regions of Laos.
If it reaches Laos, the impact of the storm could be greater than tropical storms Son-tinh and Bebinca, which caused flooding and extensive damage to property and infrastructure in many provinces in Laos.
The department has also warned northern and central regions to be on the alert for Tropical Storm Barijat which is heading westwards at a speed of 15 km per hour.
The storm is making its way towards Laos via the South China Sea and Vietnam from Wednesday to coming Tuesday, and is expected to arrive in Laos on coming Monday and Tuesday. The storm could bring heavy downpours and flash floods are possible in at-risk areas, so people should be aware of the impact of the severe conditions, which could cause overflowing rivers and landslides, leading to property damage and livestock losses, said the report.
Over the past eight months, Laos has suffered exceptionally heavy rainfall with tropical storms Son-tinh and Bebinca the most recent to lash many areas of the country.
Heavy downpours caused floodwater to inundate dwellings, farmland and other property, while key roads and bridges were damaged in many provinces.