The worst flooding caused by high tides to hit Thailand since 1942 has inundated the suburbs of Bangkok, though the capital city has been spared a truly severe event -- so far -- because it sits a little above sea level.

However, Bangkok remained under threat on Saturday from coastal high tides set to swell the Chao Praya river, The Associated Press reported.

Water was waist-level in the eastern and northern suburbs of the city, and residents waded through murky waters. Health officials were worried about the risk of infection and communicable disease the flooding can cause. In addition, crocodile hunters were sent out after reports crocodiles and snakes were sighted in the filthy waters.

Don Muang Airport, where floodwater submerged a northern field and runway, remained closed, while concern was raised about the ability of the Airports Authority of Thailand to keep Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport dry.

More than 113,000 people have taken refuge in 1,700 shelters established by the government nationwide. The Thai Finance Ministry said the damage from the floods could exceed $6 billion.

Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra said the floodwater that has wreaked havoc over the last several weeks had begun to recede, and he urged citizens to let the crisis take its course.

We have the good news that the situation in the central region has improved as runoff water gradually decreased, she said.

Check out the pictures of Thailand's worst tidal flooding in half a century.