Bangkok and neighbours seek to coordinate flood fight

Bangkok and neighbours seek to coordinate flood fight

Way sought to improve management of drainage areas shared with Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani

A passenger boat passes under the Krung Thon Bridge on the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok on Thursday. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)
A passenger boat passes under the Krung Thon Bridge on the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok on Thursday. (Photo: Pornprom Satrabhaya)

Officials in Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani have started talks on cooperation to more effectively remedy their shared flooding woes.

After a meeting at Nonthaburi Provincial Hall on Thursday, Bangkok governor Chadchart Sittipunt and Nonthaburi governor Suthee Thongyam announced that they would be jointly working on flood mitigation in their respective areas.

Mr Chadchart said he and his Nonthaburi counterpart sat down with the mayor of Nonthaburi City and the mayor of Pak Kret to review distribution of water flowing from each location to the next.

The discussion acknowledged that there are drainage areas shared by Bangkok, Nonthaburi and Pathum Thani and it would be more efficient if they coordinated the management of major canals, such as Bang Khen.

For example, he said, if the capital city increased the speed of its pumps on the Bang Khen canal, it could aid in the drainage of water upstream. Diversion of water in Pathum Thani and Nonthaburi to lesser canals would also help in this regard.

From the discussion emerged the idea that a committee comprising representatives from the three provinces could be set up to more closely coordinate how water is directed downstream.

Officials from the Department of Highways also attended the talks and briefed the governors on plans to install a subterranean drainage tunnel from Klong Prem to further aid in the effort.

Mr Suthee called the meeting auspicious, adding that talks also touched on Bangkok and Nonthaburi coordinating to reduce traffic congestion. Mr Chadchart noted that collaboration could extend in the future to matters including public health and education for the benefit of both their constituents.

On Thursday, the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation reported that flooding continued in 19 provinces in the North, the Northeast and the Central Plains and affected about 2,800 villages.

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