Severe flooding in Banteay Meanchey has hit 36,000 hectares of rice fields and 3,000 cassava farms — and driven snakes into warm kitchens where they have now bitten 300 residents, authorities said.
Over the past month, heavy rain has inundated the western province, affecting 14,000 homes and causing the evacuations of almost 1,400 families, deputy provincial administration director Nong Vuthy said on Tuesday.
But snakes have also been fleeing the floodwaters too, Vuthy said.
“They get cold and try to find somewhere warm like a kitchen. But people don’t realize it,” he said. “Snakes are also like people trying to find a safe place. Their homes are also flooded so they need to run too.”
About 300 people have been bitten over the past month, and they have been treated or taken to hospital, and no one has died, Vuthy said.
Anticipating the invasion, the administration ordered additional antivenom and put medical staff on alert.
“Our doctors stand by at every place, both health centers and safety shelters. And we’ve also prepared medicines for snake bites at every location,” he said.
Vuthy added that 75 schools and 38 pagodas had been affected by the floods, but the floodwaters appeared to be starting to go down.
The Water Resources Ministry said on Tuesday that Cambodia would still be impacted by a high pressure weather system from October 12-18, causing mild to average rain alongside thunder, lighting and wind.