Last week, a catastrophe occurred in Southern Laos displacing more than 6000 people in hours. A newly constructed dam collapsed under immense pressure from heavy monsoon rains. Nearly 5 billion cubic meters of water were released. This torrent of water and mud has swallowed entire villages, demolished roads, and drenched food sources – devastating lives. Today, thousands are still stranded, hundreds are missing and more than 30 confirmed dead. Sadly, it seems this could have been averted. According to the country's Minister of Energy and Mines, "substandard construction" caused the collapse. Even as they continue working around the clock to rescue people and recover bodies, additional concerns have arisen. During the Vietnam war, millions of tons of cluster bombs were dropped on Southern Laos, particularly in this province.