THE National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) yesterday said it was ready to supply machinery and aircraft to assist in flood relief operations, as the northeastern province of Nong Khai opened three panels of the Huai Luang Sluice Gate to prevent the r
NCPO spokeswoman Colonel Sirijan Nga-thong said that Army chief and NCPO secretary-general General Theerachai Nakawanich was worried about possible flooding and had instructed military units in affected areas to be prepared, while the central agency would support them with machinery and aircraft as needed.
Nong Khai hydrology station yesterday morning put the Mekong’s water level at 11.85 metres – just 0.35 metres below the riverbanks – but its rising rate dropped from 10 centimetres an hour to only one centimetre. As there was no rainfall, the water level was now stable and would lower, although some low-laying farmland in Muang district was already inundated.
An informed source reported that the authority also opened all three panels of the sluice gate at Huai Luang, a main branch of the Mekong, in Phon Phisai district.
In Phichit province, northern runoffs caused the Yom River to rise continuously. The DR 2.8 sluice gate’s four panels were opened to divert water to connected canals and the Nan River.
The Yom’s level in Sam Ngam district was 3.37 metres. As the DR 2.8 sluice gate is capable of draining 360 cubic metres per second to the Nan River, it was hoped Yom riverside residents in Sam Ngam, Pho Prathab Chang, Bung Narang and Pho Thale would be spared, although residents had already prepared boats for transport. In Nakhon Sawan, provincial governor Thanakhom Jongjira yesterday inspected the meeting point of the Ping and Nan rivers in Tambon Koey Chai of Chum Saeng district where the water level was 1.3 metres lower than riverbanks.
He said five large pumps would be installed to divert water from the Nan into Bung Boraphet swamp and lake. Dredging there should be completed next month, which should help prevent flooding in Central Thailand.
Chalermsak Thaksadipong, director of the Kwai Noi Bumrung Dan Dam in Phisanulok, said the current rainy season would see the dam filled to 80 per cent of its capacity. It now contained 363 million cubic metres, or 39 per cent of capacity.
In line with the Royal Irrigation Department’s policy, the dam released 8.64 million cubic metres per day to supply the Central Region’s river basin area, he added.