Accompanied by Deputy Prime minister/interior minister Yongyuth Wichaidit and Metropolitan Waterworks Authority (MWA) Governor Charoen Passara, Ms Yingluck led academics, researchers, representatives of international organisations and the private sector to observe tap water production at the Bang Khen water treatment plant.
Researchers reported to the prime minister that the water in Khlong Prapa, used to produce tap water has been affected by floodwaters which have overflowed into the canal, causing low quality of raw water contaminated with micro-organisms or germs which can cause diarrhea, but after adding chlorine, potassium permanganate and oxygen to the raw water and increasing water filtration, the water is up to standard to produce tap water safe for drinking.
The prime minister said Bangkok’s tap water complies with criteria of the World Health Organisation (WHO), whose representatives were present in inspecting tap water production.
Echoing the prime minister’s assurances were Mitsuhiro Odawara and Shingo Hayashi, specialists from the Osaka City Waterworks Bureau, who came to help the MWA and oversee tap water quality during the flood. The Japanese technical experts reaffirmed that Bangkok tap water is up to WHO standard and safe for consumption.
Ms Yingluck said consumers can boil tap water if they are put off by the strong chlorine smell, but was reassuring regarding its safety for use. She said permanent dykes will be built along Khlong Prapa to prevent a possible influx of floodwater in the future.
The MWA governor said that he was assigned by the prime minister to draw out a plan for permanent flood protection dykes along Khlong Prapa and that the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is ready to offer soft loans for the permanent dyke project.