Bangkok Governor inspects Don Mueang site where ‘Big Bag’ barrier was dismantled


BANGKOK, Nov 14 — Bangkok Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra on Monday will inspect the location at Don Mueang where the government’s ‘Big Bag’ flood barrier was dismantled by angry residents affected by surging floodwater due to the flood-prevention dyke implemented to slow the deluge from overflowing into inner Bangkok.

The governor said that he has informed the Metropolitan Police Bureau to provide security protection to Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) workers who will repair the damaged ‘Big Bag’ barrier this morning and he will inspect the scene himself.

Mr Sukhumphand said he received a letter by facsimile from Flood Prevention Operations Centre (FROC) director Pracha Promnog at 10.13pm ordering the BMA to stop angry residents from pulling down the barrier.

The six-kilometre temporary flood control dyke built of 1-2 tonne sandbags is designed to curb the inflow of floodwater from the north from inundating inner Bangkok.

The governor said the FROC should have made verbal contact instead of sending a letter at night because the issue is important and needed consultation among senior officials.

He will comply with the FROC order, Mr Sukhumbhand said, but if the task was far beyond the ability of the BMA alone. He said that City Hall would ask for cooperation from FROC.

Don Mueang district chief Phumpat Damrongkiatisak said the dismantling of the Big Bag barrier caused water to overflow into the Don Mueang area again, but the water has spread quickly over a wide area so that it could not be clearly measured how much the water surged.

He said police and air force personnel were deployed at the location where the ‘Big Bag’ was dismantled for 10 metres.

There was no significant water surging after the ‘Big Bag’ was partially dismantled.

Khlong Bang Sue, which received floodwater from Don Mueang and Ratchadapisek Road has fallen 1-2 cm, but floodwater still envelops Panjasap School.

Water flooding outbound Vibhavadi Ransit Road, heading to Ha Yak Lat Phrao intersection, is dropping because it is being pumped into Khlong Bang Sue.

Meanwhile, flood in western Bangkok is still critical, particularly at Bang Khun Thian district where some areas are covered by 15-60cm of water.

Many residents decided to evacuate their homes to stay at shelters.

On Rama II Road’s Soi 69, water in some sections reached one-metre deep and 20cm deep on the road.