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By | Paul Kunert 17th October 2011 17:32

WD: Thailand floods worse than feared

'Significant impact' on hard drive production

WD is expecting flooding in Thailand to "significantly impact" disk drive availability this quarter after the situation deteriorated.

The HDD giant last week confirmed that facilities close to Bangkok were closed as it dealt with the natural disaster. Rival Seagate is also evaluating the extent of the damage on sub assembly suppliers.

But WD confirmed it is now further extending the suspension of production.

"Over the weekend, rising water penetrated the Bang Pa-in Industrial Park flood defences, inundating the company’s manufacturing facilities there and submerging some equipment," WD said in a statement.

"At the other company manufacturing location in Thailand, Navanakorn Industrial Park, the park flood defenses were breached on Monday morning local time and water has begun to flow into the park, threatening the company’s facilities there."

Last quarter, WD produced 32.5 million drives from its fabs in Thailand, employing some 37,000 staff.

"The company now expects that the flooding of its Thailand facilities, combined with flood damage to the company’s supply chain in Thailand, will have significant impact on the company’s overall operations and its ability to meet customer demand for its products in the December quarter," said WD.

Distributors are trying to make the best of a bad situation, with VIP Computer Centre sales director Dave Stevinson claiming the "challenge is securing sufficient inventory, in particular on WD".

"There is no volume discount of any kind, inventories are tight and prices are rising," Stevinson told The Reg. ®

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