Hit by flood, drought, Pattaya locals say city should divert storm runoff to reservoir

Oh, that sinking feeling. The most recent storm battered and flooded houses and offices especially hard in the Arunothai community.

Hit regularly by both drought and flooding, fed-up Pattaya residents are wondering why the city doesn’t divert storm runoff into the Mabprachan Reservoir instead of into the sea.

Frustrations boiled over again April 11 following disastrous flooding from an unseasonal storm that inundated homes throughout the city.

Among others, Jirawat Plukjai, president of the Chumsai Community, contacted the Pattaya complaint center and Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Division for urgent assistance in draining floodwaters in the central Pattaya neighborhood.

Storm runoff also drowned Soi Buakhao, Soi Mae Wilai Market Central Pattaya, Soi Arunothai, and, worst of all, Soi Nong Yai.

Once again, floodwaters turned Soi Khao Talo into a raging river.

Adirek, a flooding victim on Soi Mae Wilai Market, said he didn’t understand how the city continues to flood given all the new water pipelines that have been laid under streets in recent years.

City officials continue to promise that the next disruptive road project will solve the problem, yet little changes, Adirek complained.

Many flood victims said the city should not be simply draining the water into the sea, but instead divert it to the Mabprachan Reservoir, which nearly ran dry last year due to drought.

However, the city’s drainage system depends on gravity, with water draining downhill from the east into the sea. The entire underground pipeline system would need to be retrofitted with pumps to allow water to go uphill.

Smelly, muddy floodwater inundates this Nong Yai compound.

It will be a nasty cleanup in Nong Yai.

Waterfalls and dangerously deep construction holes formed in South Pattaya where a pipe laying project has yet to finish.

No rainstorm would be complete without submerging this part of Sukhumvit Road in South Pattaya, a perennial trouble spot.

Soi Khao Noi could’ve been mistaken for the Mekong River.

Two lovelies out for an afternoon stroll through the Soi Buakhao flood.