Flood prevention: Just too much rain

Floods in Bangkok left cars waiting for hours. Small army of prisoners will help dredge canals, clean drains & drain water.


Photo above of one the large pumps used to remove water from flooded areas. 

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Local News

Rain exceeded city's drainage capacity

19/09/2012
Online Reporters

The flooding in inner Bangkok was caused by the sudden deluge of more than 100 millimetres of rain, well above the city's drainage capacity which could handle up to 60mm of rainfall at a time, Bangkok deputy governor Wallop Suwandee said on Wednesday.

He said the city’s drainage system - including water gates, pumping stations and water tunnels - had functioned efficiently.

The BMA had now cleaned out 97% of the city's drains and reduced water levels in canals in preparation for more rain.

Deputy city clerk Jumpol Sampaopon said Bangkok is situated on soft soil and on a low-lying plain. The land was subsiding at a rate of one centimetre to 10 centimetres each year.

The 100-130mm of rain this month caused a flood five to 20 centimetres deep in some low areas, partly because the influx of rainwater pushed up water levels in the canals and the floodwater on the roads could only drain off slowly.

The BMA will improve the water flow in canals which have only a low degree of slant that means the water runs out slowly, he said.

Meanwhile, Department of Corrections director-general Suchart Wong-anantchai said his department has 1,000 inmates ready to help dredge canals and clean drains in inner Bangkok to help combat any flooding.

Many main roads in the capital city were flooded on Tuesday after heavy rain, leaving many motorists stranded on roads for hours.

Pol Col Suchart [Wong-anantchai, director-general of Department of Corrections,] said the department would survey the spots which were flooded Tuesday to locate the problems.

If the problems were along the 3,500 kilometres of drains which had earlier been dredged, the department would send prison inmates to redo the job.

If the problems were found to be from drainage pipes being too small, the department would inform the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the government so they could take action to correct it.

The department had 1,000 inmates ready to help the BMA drain the water during heavy rain.

Pol Col Suchart said prisons nationwide been instructed to select well behaved inmates to perform public services, with a target of a total of 2,000 prisoners on stand by.

(Source: Bangkok Post, Local News, Rain exceeded city's drainage capacity, 19/09/2012, Online Reporters, link


Flood Prevention Vocabulary

drainage - the system of water or waste flowing away from a place into ground or down pipes การระบายน้ำ
drainage pipes
being too small

capacity - the total amount that can be contained ปริมาณสูงสุดที่จะรับได้
drainage capacity - the amount of water that can be removed from a place during a period of time

exceed -
go beyond or over an amount
exceed drainage capacity

rain exceeded city's drainage capacity
well above the city's drainage capacity

deluge - when a large amount of water comes to the place (either as rain or as a flood)
sudden deluge of rain

handle - deal with or solve a problem
could handle up to 60mm of rainfall at a time

deputy - a person who is given the power to do something instead of another person, or the person whose rank is immediately below that of the leader of an organisation รอง, ตัวแทน,ผู้รักษาการแทน

Bangkok deputy governor

The flooding in inner Bangkok was caused by the sudden deluge of more than 100 millimetres of rain, well above the city's drainage capacity which could handle up to 60mm of rainfall at a time, Bangkok deputy governor Wallop Suwandee said on Wednesday.

pump -
a machine to move water from one place to another place
pumping stations

tunnel -
a long hole underground (that can be used to travel from one place to another place) อุโมงค์; ทางใต้ดิน, ช่อง หรือทางที่ขุดลงไปใต้ดินหรือในภูเขา
water tunnels

efficiently - doing tasks successfully without wasting time, energy or resources; done in an effective, organised way อย่างมีประสิทธิภาพ
functioned efficiently

canal -
a long man-made waterway or river to carry boats or water from place to place  คลอง

He said the city’s drainage system - including water gates, pumping stations and water tunnels - had functioned efficiently. The BMA had now cleaned out 97% of the city's drains and reduced water levels in canals in preparation for more rain.

plain - a long flat area (on the earth) พื้นที่ราบ
low-lying plain

soft
- not hard, easy to push in with fingers นุ่ม, อ่อนนุ่ม, นุ่มนวล, เนียนนุ่ม, อ่อนละมุน, ละมุนละไม, ละมุน
soil - the dirt on the ground ดิน, พื้นดิน
soft soil


situated - located at ระบุที่อยู่ ที่ตั้ง ตั้งอยู่ที่
Bangkok is situated on soft soil and on a low-lying plain

subside - fall down or move to a lower level
the land was subsiding

rate
- อัตรา
a rate of one centimetre each year

influx
- an amount of something coming into a place (example: an influx of investment money coming into the country)
influx of rainwater


Deputy city clerk Jumpol Sampaopon said Bangkok is situated on soft soil and on a low-lying plain. The land was subsiding at a rate of one centimetre to 10 centimetres each year. The 100-130mm of rain this month caused a flood five to 20 centimetres deep in some low areas, partly because the influx of rainwater pushed up water levels in the canals and the floodwater on the roads could only drain off slowly.

improve - to make better ทำให้ดีขึ้น
improve the water flow in canals

slant - the angle of the side of a hill or slope; how steep something is  เอียง
low degree of slant - a slope with small angle

The BMA will improve the water flow in canals which have only a low degree of slant that means the water runs out slowly, he said.

prison inmates - people who are living in prison as punishment for a crime
inmates - Same as "prison inmates"

send prison inmates to do the job

dredge - to remove unwanted things from the bottom of a river, lake, etc. using a sucking or other device ขุดลอก
1,000 inmates ready to help dredge canals

combat - try to solve a problem (like you are fighting a serious war)
help combat any flooding

capital - the city that is the center of government for a country
the capital city

motorist - a person driving a car on roads
stranded - cannot leave a place (example: because of bad weather or protesters) ถูกปล่อยเกาะ ปล่อยเกาะ ถูกทิ้งไว้
leaving many motorists stranded

Meanwhile, Department of Corrections director-general Suchart Wong-anantchai said his department has 1,000 inmates ready to help dredge canals and clean drains in inner Bangkok to help combat any flooding. Many main roads in the capital city were flooded on Tuesday after heavy rain, leaving many motorists stranded on roads for hours.

locate - to find where something is หาทำเล,หาที่ตั้ง
locate problems

survey -
take a quick look over a place (looking for the general situation, not the details)
spot -
a place
survey spots -
take a look at places
survey
the spots which were flooded to locate problems

inform
- tell people about what happened, report new information to people who don't know about it yet
inform the the government

take action to correct
it

Pol Col Suchart Wong-anantchai, director-general of Department of Corrections, said the department would survey the spots which were flooded Tuesday to locate the problems. If the problems were along the 3,500 kilometres of drains which had earlier been dredged, the department would send prison inmates to redo the job. If the problems were found to be from drainage pipes being too small, the department would inform the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and the government so they could take action to correct it.

nationwide - throughout a whole country ทั่วทั้งประเทศ ทั่วประเทศ
prisons nationwide been instructed to

behave - act in a certain way (example: behave in a polite and respectful manner)
well behaved - act in a good way (that people like)

perform -
do
perform public services - do things that are useful for all the people who live in an area (example: sweeping the sidewalks is a public service)

select well behaved inmates to perform public services

target
- a goal; the amount you are planning to achieve เป้าหมาย
on stand by - being ready for action (to do something) if needed

a target of a total of 2,000 prisoners on stand by

The department had 1,000 inmates ready to help the BMA drain the water during heavy rain. Pol Col Suchart said prisons nationwide been instructed to select well behaved inmates to perform public services, with a target of a total of 2,000 prisoners on stand by.

About the author

columnist
Writer: Jon Fernquest
Position: Online Writer