Chao Phraya River set to rise, but Bangkok flooding 'risk is low', govt says

Chao Phraya River set to rise, but Bangkok flooding 'risk is low', govt says

The Royal Irrigation Department (RID) has warned of rising water levels in the Chao Phraya River but played down flooding risks in Bangkok even though 13 provinces had flooded on Saturday.

RID deputy director-general Thaweesak Thanadachopol said a monsoon trough covering the lower part of the North, the Central Plains region and the East had caused heavy rains in Kamphaeng Phet, Nakhon Sawan and Phichit, raising the water level of the Chao Phraya in Nakhon Sawan province.

Excess water from rain has flowed into waterways in the provinces which emptied into the river, one of the country's lifelines for agriculture.

The Chao Phraya barrage dam, meanwhile, has continued to receive more water from the Chao Phraya and Sakae Krang rivers. The dam's water level in downstream Ayutthaya province is expected to increase by up to 1 metre in the next few days.

Although the department is discharging water from irrigation areas hit by the inundation in the lower part of the Chao Phraya River basin, it confirmed the water volume making its way downstream via the river will not affect Bangkok.

In Nakhon Ratchasima's Non Sung district, the Moon River burst its banks and flooded more than 30 homes and paddy fields, prompting residents to move their belongings to higher ground.

Riverside homes were under more than 1m of water which is feared to rise further in the next couple of days.

The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation has reported that flooding has persisted in 13 provinces. The department and agencies were providing emergency assistance as pumps were mobilised in flooded zones.

A total of 34 provinces and more than 65,000 people were affected by heavy rains caused by a depression and the southwest monsoon from Oct 7-24. The death toll stood at four.

The Thai Meteorological Department yesterday reported a high-pressure system from China in the central and eastern regions, causing the temperatures in the upper part of the country to drop by 1-3ºC, strong winds and heavy rains in some areas in the North.

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