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Water 'unsafe' for Songkran

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Water quality at Tha Phae, the most popular spot for water splashing in Chiang Mai, is substandard and needs improvement before Songkran, pollution officials say. 

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A scene from last year's Songkran festivities at the Thae Pae gate. The Department of Pollution Control says the water there must be improved to make this year's water play safe. THITI WANNAMONTHA.

Chiang Mai water 'unsafe' for Songkran

Apinya Wipatayotin

Water quality at Tha Phae, the most popular spot for water splashing in Chiang Mai, is substandard and needs improvement before people can safely use it during the Songkran festival this month, the Department of Pollution Control says.

Tha Phae forms part of the moat that surrounds the ancient city's inner area and the water's oxygen level is below safe standards, according to Rapeesak Malairungsakul, the acting chief of the 1st Regional Environment Office in Chiang Mai.

On March 27 the department collected water samples from 10 spots around the city moat, where tourists gather to celebrate the Songkran festival, and found that four of them, including Tha Phae, have less than the standard of four miligrammes per litre of dissolved oxygen (DO) in the water.

Tha Phae Gate is the main entrance to the old moated city and the roads around it are among the busiest in Chiang Mai. PEERAWAT JARIYASOMBAT

The moat' s water quality needs to be improved so it is safe for tourists who will take part in Songkran festivities in Chiang Mai in the middle of this month.

The water could prove harmful if it enters the mouth, eyes or wounds of festival goers.

“We can say the water in Tha Phae has deteriorated and action is urgently needed to increase oxygen in the water before the festival starts,” Mr Rapeesak said.

His team found that the DO level in Tha Phae — to the east — is bad at 2.60 mg/l. But the worst area is in front of the Chiang Mai-Ram Hospital — a western part of the moat — where the DO level is 2 mg/l.

The other two spots are in front of Watanothai Payap School also to the west and Computer City to the north.

Water quality is good at the other six spots ranging between 4.6-7.53 mg/l.

Mr Rapeesak said waste water discharge into the moat is one cause of the problem and the water quality this year is not much different from last year's.

Department chief Wichien Jungrungruang said he will send the results of the tests to the Chiang Mai Municipality recommending it install equipment to increase oxygen levels in the moat.

Last year, the authorities successfully used microorganism balls to improve oxygen levels and water quality in the city's moat, which is popular among both local and foreign celebrants.

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Vocabulary:

acting: doing the work of the usual person in a particular job while they are not there, or until a new person starts - ที่รักษาการแทน

ancient: very old - ที่เก่าแก่ ที่โบราณ

authority: a person or government agency who has the power to make decisions or enforce the law - เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ

celebrant: a person who is celebrating something, for example at a party - ผู้เฉลิมฉลอง

deteriorate: to become worse - เลวร้ายลง

discharge: letting a liquid flow out - การปล่อยออก, การขับออก

dissolve: to be absorbed by a liquid, especially when mixed - ละลาย

environment: a place, including all the physical conditions that affect it - สภาพแวดล้อม, สิ่งแวดล้อม

festivities: the activities that are organized to celebrate a special event - งานเทศกาล

gather: to come together in a group - รวมกลุ่ม, รวมตัวกัน, จับกลุ่มกัน, ชุมนุม

harmful: causing damage or injury to somebody/something, especially to a person's health or to the environment - เป็นอันตราย,เป็นภัย

improve: to make better - ทำให้ดีขึ้น

improvement: when something gets better or when you make it better - การปรับปรุง, การทำให้ดีขึ้น

level: the amount of something that exists in a particular situation at a particular time - ระดับ

moat: a deep wide channel that was dug around a castle, etc. and filled with water to make it more difficult for enemies to attack - คูน้ำรอบปราสาทหรือเมือง

popular: a situation in which someone or something is liked by many people - เป็นที่นิยม, เป็นที่ชื่นชอบ

prove: to show to be true, i.e., to have a particular quality - ปรากฎความจริง

quality: the standard of something when it is compared to other things like it; how good or bad something is - คุณภาพ

recommend: to advise someone that they should do something - แนะนำ

sample: a small amount of a substance that is used for scientific or medical tests - ตัวอย่างทดลอง

spot: the particular place where someone or something is - ที่, สถานที่

standards: a level of quality that is normal or acceptable for a particular person or in a particular situation - มาตรฐาน, บรรทัดฐาน

substandard: not as good as you would normally expect, or not good enough to be accepted - ต่ำกว่ามาตราฐาน

surround: to be everywhere around someone/something; encircle - ล้อมรอบ

urgently: needing to be dealt with immediately - อย่างเร่งด่วน

wound: an injury in which your skin or flesh is damaged - บาดแผล

Related search: Chiang Mai, Songkran, Tha Phae, unsafe water

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