City to limit Songkran water-splashing
City Hall has decided to limit water-splashing activities during the Songkran festival in Bangkok to reduce water consumption in the face of severe drought.
Water throwing will be limited to three days, April 12-14, and all water throwing activities in the city's 50 districts must stop at 9pm, said deputy Bangkok governor Amorn Kitchawengkul.
The Songkran holiday this year is spread over five days, April 13-17, with April 16 and 17 falling on the weekend.
The decision was made at a joint meeting between the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA), the Tourism and Sports Ministry, the Tourism Police Division and the private sector.
Throwing water is the highlight of the festival and many popular Songkran celebration areas, including Silom and Khao San Road, become battle grounds for water fights and celebrations which usually end late at night.
Mr Amorn said the business sector understands the situation and has agreed to cooperate to help save water. Water consumption during the festival increases three-fold on typical demand.
Business operators on Silom Road and CentralWorld shopping mall, popular venues for celebrations, have also agreed not to provide water to Songkran revellers, he said.
At Khao San Road, the Phra Nakhon district office will launch a campaign to make sure foreign tourists understand the country's need to scale back on the use of water and to urge restraint. The festival draws many foreigners to the country.