Artesian well provides drought lifeline in Surin

Artesian well provides drought lifeline in Surin

Villagers arrive with containers to fetch water from the artesian well at Ban Nakha in tambon Tatum of Surin's Sangkha district. (Photos by Nopparat Kingkaew)
Villagers arrive with containers to fetch water from the artesian well at Ban Nakha in tambon Tatum of Surin's Sangkha district. (Photos by Nopparat Kingkaew)

SURIN -- In the face of persistent heat and drought, an artesian well has become the main source of relief for a border village in Sangkha district, providing a year-round non-stop flow of natural underground water.

This artesian well is located near Ban Khana, a village on the border with Cambodia, in tambon Tatum of Sangkha district.

The ensure the best use of this natural source of water, the Tatum tambon administration organisation (TAO) has built a cement wellhead over it, with PVC pipes and taps to control the outflow.

A bowl-shape concrete and stone structure has been built around the well, with a staircase so people can easily access the water. It is free of charge to local people, who depend on it for household use.

Not only the nearby village benefits, traders from faraway villages also arrive in pickups and trucks loaded with various kinds of containers. Everyday, they can be seen waiting in a long queue for their turn to get water.

The Tatun TAO charges them 10 baht for 200 litres of water, 50 baht for 1,000 litres and 80 baht for 1,500 litres.

Chai Saenkom, 50,  from nearby Kalengwek village, said he sells each 1,000 litres of water he gets from the well for 300-350 baht, depending on the travel distance. Each day, he can make four trips at most, as the water is now flowing out slowly with many people waiting for it in a long queue.

Somchai Kaewsawang, the head of Ban Khana, said villagers believe the water from the well has a beneficial mineral content.

The well is managed by a village committee.  Seventy percent of the money from sale of the water is set aside as a community development fund, 20% for the people who collect the payments, and 10% for the committee.

A girl and her grandmother fetch the clear-running water from the artesian well. (Photo by Noppawarat Kingkaew)

Water trucks queue to fill their tanks at the artesian well in Sangkha district, Surin. (Photo by Nopparat Kingkae)


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