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Death toll rises to 381 in Thai floods

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 2:09 AM EDT, Wed November 2, 2011
Bangkok residents paddle a makeshift boat through floodwaters on Sunday, October 30. Thai officials warned residents in the capital to be vigilant and expect disruptions with electricity and tap water as Thailand battles its worst flooding in decades. Bangkok residents paddle a makeshift boat through floodwaters on Sunday, October 30. Thai officials warned residents in the capital to be vigilant and expect disruptions with electricity and tap water as Thailand battles its worst flooding in decades.
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Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
Heavy flooding in Thailand
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The leading causes of flood-related deaths are drowning and electrocution
  • Already, the flooding has caused an estimated $6 billion in damages
  • Charities working in the country warn about diarrhea, dengue fever and malaria in the coming weeks

(CNN) -- The death toll from the worst floods in half a century to hit Thailand continued to climb on Tuesday.

So far, at least 381 people have been killed during months of monsoon rains, according to the country's Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation.

The ministry of public health said that the leading causes of flood-related deaths are drowning and electrocution.

Bangkok's central business district has avoided major flooding so far, but outlying areas are chest- or waist-deep in water.

Bangkok airport surrounded by water
Bangkok residents battle floodwaters
Thailand flood explained

Residents could be seen piling their belongings onto boats, which bobbed on flooded streets.

U.S. Ambassador to Thailand Kristie A. Kenney said Monday that "the worst may be over for central Bangkok," but about 2 million people are still affected by the flooding. The United States has pledged a total of $1.1 million in aid.

Charities working in the country have warned of diseases such as diarrhea, dengue fever and malaria in the coming days and weeks.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has said authorities would speed up the process of draining water into Bangkok's canals and into the sea, raising hopes that water levels in the city could start to sink. However, the government has warned it may take more than a month for the floods to recede.

Already, the flooding has caused an estimated $6 billion in damages, the Thai finance ministry has said.

The government has set up more than 1,700 shelters, where more than 113,000 people have taken refuge.

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