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Thai Residents Brace Against Rising Flood Waters In Bangkok

BANGKOK,THAILAND - NOVEMBER 3: Men pull eggs in a small boat through the floodwater at the closed Don Muang airport November 3, 2011 in Bangkok,Thailand. The airport was used as a domestic terminal and was formerly the International airport. Thailand is experiencing the worst flooding in over 50 years and has affected more than nine million people. Over 400 people have died in flood-related incidents since late July according to the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation. (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Photos: Thailand's ordeal by water

Bangkok, one of the favourite tourist destinations of the East, is also a city that climatologists have warned for years to be sinking. Two spells of flooding this year -- including one in March, supposedly the country's dry season -- have claimed hundreds of lives and destroyed livelihoods. The death toll in this year's post-monsoon flooding, which began in late July, has exceeded 500. An area the size of Kuwait has been underwater. Food, clean water and medication are the needs of the hour, but relief workers are struggling to reach supplies to far-flung villages where disease and electrocution threaten survivors. Rising floodwaters have shut down industrial estates, threatening to hit the carmaking industry (leading Japanese automakers have plants in Thailand). Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, enduring her first grueling test since she assumed power in August, is facing the ire of the people who are threatening to break flood barricades that are keeping inner Bangkok dry while marooning surrounding suburbs.