Thursday, 16 August 2018 20:17

2018 LAOS ATTAPEU FLOOD (6-12 AUG) Featured

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On 23 July 2018, heavy rains breached the walls of Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy (PNPC) hydroelectric power station dam releasing a torrential surge of water downstream resulting in widespread damages. At least 34 were killed, more than 1,126 persons missing and 6,600 others were affected by the catastrophic flood waters.

Our local contact Mr Onchan from Savanankhet has done the first assessment on 30 July in areas around Sanamxai, Attapeu. In total, there are 15 villages are affected. CREST has mobilised 4 volunteers to join the distribution of essential items on the trip from 4 to 12 August.

Objectives of the Trip

1) To create a logistics plan to enter the affected areas.

2) Join distribution with our local partners.

3) Conduct assessment for income generation programs.

Team Members

Leader – CK Cheong (CREST)
Treasurer – Liu Chong Mei (China)
Travel log – Du Ting Ting (China)
Photographer – Jennifer Lee

Travel Events

6th Aug 12:01 – Kunming team arrived at Changshui Airport

03:00 – Kunming team arrived at Don Mueang, queued for 3.5 hours for transit visa

03:30 – Malaysia team arrived at KLIA 2

09:30 – Both teams meet up and wait for shuttle bus to Suvarnabhumi Airport

13:00 – Check-in Lao Airline and lunch

15:30 – Arrive and transit at Pakse Airport

16:14 – Arrive at Savannakhet Airport

16:30 – Money changer 1 USD – 8,680 kip for 100 note, other note 8,000 kip at Xayyapoum Village (N 16° 32.757’, E 104° 45.294’)

16:46 – Purchase LOCAL mobile SIM card at village 35 (N 16° 29.307’, E 105° 2.182’) 20:00 – Dinner at local restaurant, Napong Village (N 15° 38.006', E 105° 48.374')

20:40 – Continue driving 23:20 – Camped overnight at Thateng (N 15° 23.310', E 106° 22.721')

7th Aug 07:00 – Wake up and pack up tents

07:30 – Breakfast

08:27 – Leave for Sanamxai

09:35 – Gas station and Sinouk Coffee (N 15° 22.528', E 106° 42.992')

13:05 – Arrive at Command Center, Sanamxai, Attapeu (N 14° 41.139', E 106° 34.764')

13:50 – Leave for disaster areas

14:25 – Arrive at disaster area in Sanamxai, interviewed 3 families in temporary tents area, assist in distribution of relief goods (toothpaste and tooth brush; rice; clothes; soup and towel; children’s food) 17:00 – Leave Command Center

18:32 – Dinner at local restaurant

19:15 – Check in Duc Loc 02 Budget Motel (N 14° 48.340', E 106° 50.128')

8th Aug 05:00 – Depart from Duc Loc 02

09:40 – Breakfast, enter restricted zone Mai village (Ground 0 – N 14° 42.491', E 106° 30.108')

12:33 – Arrive at Command Center for lunch

13:30 – Leave for Savannakhet

16:18 – A stop at Sikon

19:33 – Dinner in Savanakhet (same place as first day)

23:13 – Arrive at Soulinsouk Budget Hotel, Savannakhet (N 16° 34.452', E 104° 45.076' )

9th Aug 07:30 – Breakfast, devotion

08:30 – Team debriefing, financial updates, photos and travel log consolidation.

18:00 – Visit Mr. Onchan’s family in Savannakhet. Sharing and debriefing with Mr. Onchan’s team of volunteers

22:00 – Return to base

10th Aug 07:30 – Breakfast, devotion

08:30 – Sharing with team about Lombok Earthquake, status and updates.

14:30 – Visit to wet market for local economy assessment (N 16° 34.566’, E 104° 45.019’)

18:30 – Dinner 22:15 – Return to base

11th Aug 07:30 – Breakfast, devotion

09:30 – Finalize report

18:00 – Dinner at Mr. Onchan’s house

22:00 – Return to base

12th Aug 06:30 – Breakfast, depart for Savannakhet Airport at 07:05

09:35 – From Savannekhet, Pakse, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur.

20:10 – Arrival at KLIA2.


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1. Distribution at IDP Center, Sanamxai, Attapeu (N 14° 41.139', E 106° 34.764') & Oudomxai Village, Sanamxai, Attapeu.

  • 200 packs x 1kg sticky rice
  • 160 packs x blankets
  • 400 packs x hygiene kit (soap, tooth paste, tooth brush, shampoo)
  • 350 packs x family clothing (adult female, male and children total of 10 pieces)

2. Assessment with the local survivals, Sanamxai District, Attapue. Overall in Sanamxai district, the essential items are provided.

There is enough food, water, shelter and medical care. According to our local assessment, there is no dengue or malaria outbreak. The villagers in IDP center are traveling back and forth into their destroyed home to salvage whatever is useable. Most of them brought nothing except the clothes on their backs during the emergency evacuation.

Majority of the relief teams are coming in from Thailand. In the command center, we met teams from Shenzhen, China and Hong Kong, China. At ground zero, we are offered a ride by the Singapore Civil Defence Team which is conducting search & rescue in the area where missing persons were reported.

2.1 Name: Mr. Kee, married with 2 children (first row center, wife second from left)
Village: Domdoo, 200 Households

Before: Mr. Kee is a farmer and plants rice and keeps cows, chickens, ducks and pigs.

During: 22 July, 10pm. Kee’s family was asleep. The leader of the village was shouting to tell all villagers to evacuate due to the coming flood water from the hydro dam. Within 2-3 minutes, the water rose from waist level to the chin. Mr. Kee’s wife managed to grab a packet of rice and swam to the nearest rooftop for safety. 6am, they were rescued by the local army.

After: Mr. Kee’s house was completely damaged except for the roof. All the rice fields were also fully damaged and livestock lost. He has skills in carpentry and wished to able to make something from wood to sell when he returns home.


2.2 Name: Madam Pin, single mother (first from left) with 2 children and mother (third from left)
Domdoo, 200 Households

Before: She is a farmer and plants rice and keeps livestock of cows, chicken, ducks and pigs.

During: 22 July, 10pm she and her family were asleep. The leader of the village was shouting to tell all the villagers to evacuate due to the coming flood water from the hydro dam. Within 2-3 minutes, water had risen from the waist level to the chin. At about 3am, her family was rescued by the local community by boat.

After: Her house is not totally destroyed. She has no plans for the future.

2.3 Name: Mr. Ko, married with 1 son and 2 daughters
Thahintai, 250 Household

Before: He owns his land and plants rice and sticky rice and keeps livestock of cows, buffalos, chicken, ducks and pigs. He has an annual income of 18,000,000 kip

After: His house, farm and land within the whole village is totally destroyed. The government has planned to relocate the whole village. However, each family has to pay 500,000 kip (USD 60) to cover part of the cost of rebuilding by the local government.

3. Other Activities

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Team from CREST Malaysia Reporting to Command Center

Assessment at IDP center

Logistics planning, map reading & collaboration with local partner

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Travelling under the sun and rain

Accessing to ground zero

Ground Zero


1. Logistics - next team of volunteers may consider traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok, Bangkok to Pakse. From Pakse take ground transport to Attepue. We recommend to stay and use Duc Loc Motel (N 14° 48.340', E 106° 50.128') as our meeting point with local partners instead of travel to Savannakhet.

2. Back-to-Work Program – rice is controlled by government, the only support we can consider giving is a set of tools for farming. A full set of tools contain:

  1. Spade – 30,000 kip
  2. Shovel – 25,000 kip
  3. Knife – 30,000 kip
  4. Rake – 30,000 kip
  5. Hoe – 50,000 kip
  6. Sickle – 30,000 kip
  7. Water Boot – 35,000 kip

3. Livelihood support – Animal husbandry

  1. 3 months chicken – 30,000 kip – market selling at 30,000 kip / kg
  2. 3 months duck – 30,000 kip – market selling at 30,000 kip / kg
  3. 100 x fish fries (tilapia) – 25,000 kip – market selling at 20,000 kip / kg
  4. 1 pair of 3-4 month old goats – 1,000,000 kip – market selling at 100,000 kip / kg
  5. 1 x mother cow – 3,000,000 kip – market selling at 65,000 kip / kg

4. Community project – fish farming. We have highlighted to Mr Onchan about the possibility of community project for fish farming. The challenges are local culture and the acceptance of the idea of working together as community and profit sharing.


Document A: Appeal letter from Laos Embassy in Malaysia

Document B: Permit to enter Ground Zero (A restricted area, 95% of the relief teams are rejected)

Submitted by CK Cheong
13 August 2018

Read 826 times Last modified on Wednesday, 22 August 2018 09:13