It’s always nice to know that the village where you are doing research is at risk of landslides and flash floods! That is what this recently erected sign advised me earlier this month.

village at risk

Given that upland deforestation is often cited as one of the primary causes of flash flooding (in Thailand and in many other parts of the world) I have always found it interesting that the Thai term for flash flooding is “nam pa“. Literally this translates as “forest water” perhaps suggesting that forested hillsides have long been a source of downstream flooding. The most common cause of flash flooding is, I suspect, excessive rainfall. In extreme rainfall events landcover probably plays a very limited role.