11 July 2024

The Royal Irrigation Department has given an assurance that Bangkok will not be flooded by water from the Chao Phraya River, unless there is heavy rain in the capital.

Head of the irrigation office in charge of water management in the Chao Phraya River basin, Krisada Sripermpan, said today (Monday) that several communities located along the river, in Hat Arsa and Po Nang Kham sub-districts of Sappaya district in Chainat province, have already been flooded by the swollen river, following the increase in the discharge rate from the Chao Phraya Dam to 2,500 cubic metres per second, a rate which will be maintained for a week.

Although a huge volume of excess water, flowing from Sukhothai province, is still being retained upstream of the dam, the discharge downstream will not be increased to 2,800 cubic metres per second, to ensure that Bangkok will be spared from flooding.

In the northern province of Phitsanulok, irrigation officials have been busily working to divert water from Sukhothai into the Thung Bang Rakam water retention area, or “monkey cheek”, which is now holding 258 million cubic metres of water, with enough space to store another 140 million cubic metres.

This will reduce the volume of water flowing downstream to Nakhon Sawan and further down the Chao Phraya River to Bangkok.

Meanwhile, Army Commander-in-Chief General Narongphan Jitkaewtae held an online emergency meeting with all public disaster relief centres of the army, during which the centres were ordered to send more men and equipment to help flood victims in flooded provinces across the country.

Special equipment, such as pontoon bridges, sand bags and motor boats, are to be deployed to heavily-flooded areas.