The distribution of relief supplies was problematic, communications with the public often poor, but as the Flood Relief Operations Command (Froc) winds down, people who worked for it are proud of the contribution they made.
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The distribution of relief supplies to flood victims, like these residents of Saphan Mai, Bang Khen district, was often slow and inefficient, but in the end, Froc officials say they got the job done. RATTASEEMA PONGSAN
Froc winds down after frenetic time
Its offices sit empty, but staff are proud of their work
As the Flood Relief Operations Command (Froc) winds down, team members have told of their struggles in dealing with the biggest flood Thailand has witnessed in 50 years.
Empty chairs and tables now fill the hall once abuzz with people from the Government Public Relations Department and reporters.
The lights are dim, and cables and wires are strewn across the floor, ready to be packed and stowed away.
Barely any traces are left of the sandbag walls and elaborate flood barriers that protected the Energy Complex building which served as the Froc headquarters.
On Dec 8, the Froc's downsizing began following talks between its director Pracha Promnok and governors of seven provinces that remain flooded.
The Froc reduced its staff from over 2,000 to just 200, and all offices were consolidated on the 15th floor.
Anurak Khajonrit, an HR officer at the Secretariat of the Prime Minister, was transferred to the Froc when the centre was still located at Don Mueang.
He recounted the mayhem when the Froc had to escape the floodwater at its Don Mueang base on Oct 28.
"It was confusing and chaotic. No one thought that the flood would break through. People were in disarray. We didn't know where to go," Mr Anurak said. "All officials and volunteers, as well as reporters, were forced to flee as the water burst open a 30m gap and quickly swamped the airport. The breach took everyone by surprise."
A fevered scene ensued when electrical power was cut and startled officials tried to save important documents and computers while fleeing.
Later, the command was told to relocate to the Energy Complex down Vibhavadi Road. Mr Anurak said the relocation was confusing at first.
Once the dust settled, however, the Froc's work became more systematic and organised than it had been at Don Mueang.
"Previously, the Froc consisted of government officials, volunteers and other third-party organisations. Control and management were difficult, even more so when you had to cater to a constantly fluctuating number of people," he said.
More security measures were imposed at the Energy Complex and many people were barred from entering the building.
Despite criticism of the Froc for its handling of donations and poor communications, Mr Anurak said he is happy he had the chance to contribute and he would do so again.
"I am proud to have taken part. The Froc's main objective was to help people in need and its closure means the task is complete and the Froc has fulfilled its purpose," he said.
Chaturapoom Phatong, 18, an audio-visual employee at the Energy Ministry, was in charge of coordinating requests for relief bags. He understood the needs well, he said, because he was a flood victim himself.
He said the biggest problem was that people did not understand the system. They came in with no request letters or petitions and expected to receive the relief bags right away, he said.
At first, work at the Froc proceeded slowly because everything had to be approved first by the director. The command adapted gradually, and the process of approving aid requests was cut down to within a day or two.
distribution – the process of giving something out to many different places การแจกจ่าย
relief – help; assistance การช่วยให้พ้นภัย
supplies – the things such as food, medicines, fuel, etc. that are needed by a group of people สิ่งที่จัดหาให้, เสบียง, เวชภัณฑ์
problematic – causing or involving problems ก่อปัญหา
the public – people in general ประชาชน, สาธารณชน, มหาชน
Flood Relief Operations Centre (Froc) – the government's centre for assisting flood victims ศูนย์ปฎิบัติการช่วยเหลือผู้ประสบอุทกภัย(ศปภ)
wind down – to gradually become less or stop ค่อยๆ ยุติลง
proud – feeling pleased and satisfied about something that you own or have done, or are connected with ภูมิใจ
contribution – something that you do that helps to achieve something or to make it successful ผลงาน,การช่วยเหลือ
victim – someone who has been affected by a bad situation, such as a disaster, illness or an accident เหยื่อผู้เคราะห์ร้าย
residents – people who live in a particular area ประชาชนที่อาศัยในท้องที่
inefficient – not doing a job well and not making the best use of time, money, energy, etc ซึ่งไร้ประสิทธิภาพ
frenetic – involving a lot of energy and activity in a way that is not organised บ้าคลั่ง, บ้าระห่ำ
struggle – a very difficult task that you can do only by making a great effort ความพยายาม
witness – to see something happen – มองเห็น, เป็นพยาน
abuzz – filled with noise and activity เต็มไปด้วยเสียงดังอึกทึก
reporter – someone whose job is to write articles or make broadcasts about events in the news ผู้สื่อข่าว, นักข่าว
dim – having little light ไม่สว่าง, ไม่แจ่มชัด
strewn – covered with things, especially in a disordered way อีฉุยอีแฉก, กระจัดกระจาย
stow away – to put something in a safe place เก็บไว้
barely – only just; almost not เกือบจะไม่
traces – very small amounts of something ร่องรอย
elaborate – containing a lot of careful detail or many parts อย่างรอบคอบ, ซับซ้อน
barrier – a wall, pile of sandbags, etc., that prevents water from entering สิ่งกีดขวาง
protect – to make sure that somebody/something is not harmed, injured, damaged, etc ป้องกัน, คุ้มกัน
headquarters – the place where an organisation or company has its main offices สำนักงานใหญ่ กองบัญชาการ
downsize – to reduce the number of people who work in a company, business, etc. usually in order to reduce costs
reduce – to make something smaller or less in amount, size, importance etc ลดลง
staff – all the workers employed by a person or organisation considered as a group คณะผู้ทำงาน, คนงาน
consolidate – to bring together to form one unit รวมเป็นหนึ่ง
secretariat – a group of senior people within a government or organisation สำนักเลขาธิการ
transfer – to change someone’s job or responsibilities โยกย้ายตำแหน่ง
located – where something is ตั้งอยู่
recount – to describe how something happened; to tell a story เล่า, บรรยาย
mayhem – a situation in which there is little or no order or control ความโกลาหล
confusing – difficult to understand; not clear น่าสับสน
chaotic – happening in a confused way and without any order or organisation ยุ่งเหยิง วุ่นวาย
disarray – a situation in which people are very confused or things are not organised, especially because something unexpected has happened ความสับสน, ความไม่เป็นระเบียบ, ความอลหม่าน
volunteer – someone who is not paid for the work that they do อาสาสมัคร
flee – to leave a place or person quickly because you are afraid of possible danger หนี อพยพ
burst – to break open suddenly because there is too much pressure inside or against โพล่ง, แตก, ระเบิด
gap – a space or opening in the middle of something or between things ช่องว่าง
swamp – to cover a place or thing with a large amount of water ทำให้ท่วม, ทำให้จมอยู่ในน้ำ
breach – a break through or over something รอยแตก, การข้าม, การทำให้แตก
fevered – showing great excitement or worry
scene – a view that you can see in a picture or from the place where you are วิว, ภาพ, ทิวทัศน์,ทัศนียภาพ
ensue – to happen after something else, often as a result of it ตามมา
startled – to be suddenly very surprised in a way that slightly shocks or frightens you ผวา, ขวัญหาย
document – a piece of paper or a set of papers containing official information เอกสาร
relocate – to move someone or something to another place โยกย้ายประชาชนออกจากบริเวณ
the dust settled – the situation became stable or normal
systematic – done according to a system or plan, in a thorough, efficient or determined way ซึ่งเป็นระบบ
consist – to be made of or formed from something ประกอบด้วย
third-party – a person or gorup who is involved in a situation in addition to the two main people or groups involved บุคคลภายนอก
cater to – to try to satisfy a need จัดหามาเพื่อคนใดคนหนึ่งหรือคนกลุ่มหนึ่ง
constantly – continuously; all the time อย่างต่อเนื่อง
fluctuate – to change or vary, especially continuously and between one level or thing and another ผันแปร, ขึ้นๆ ลงๆ
measure – an action taken to solve a particular problem มาตรการ
impose – to introduce something, such as a new law or new system and force people to accept it นำกฎหมายมาบังคับใช้
bar – to officially not allow someone to do something or go somewhere ห้าม
handle – to take action in order to deal with a difficult situation ดูแล, จัดการ
donation – money or goods that you give to an organisation, especially one that helps people เงินหรือสิ่งของบริจาค
objective – what you plan to achieve; goal; aim; purpose เป้าหมาย
task – something that you have to do หน้าที่; ภารกิจ
fulfill – to achieve something that you wanted to do, or to get something that you hoped for สำเร็จ
coordinate – to organise the different parts of a job or plan so that the people involved work together effectively ประสานงานกัน
petition – an official document asking for someone in authority to take action คำร้อง
proceed – to carry out an activity ดำเนินการ
approve – to give official permission อนุมัต
adapt – to change to suit different conditions or uses ทำให้เข้ากับ, ปรับตัว
gradually – slowly and in small stages or amounts อย่างทีละน้อย
process – a series of actions that you take in order to achieve a result แนวทางปฏิบัติ, กระบวน, วิธีการ
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