178 replies to this topic
Posted 2011-10-20 11:35:57
Thai PM says floods in parts of Bangkok inevitable
by Boonradom Chitradon
BANGKOK, October 20, 2011 (AFP) - Thailand's premier said Thursday that it was impossible to protect all of Bangkok from the country's worst floods in decades, describing the situation as a "national crisis".
"We cannot block the water forever," Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra told reporters, adding that the government would choose which parts of the city to allow the water through to minimise the impact.
"The longer we block the water the higher it gets," she said. "We need areas that water can be drained through so the water can flow out to the sea."
The government has reinforced the city's floodwalls in an attempt to prevent the floods pouring into the densely populated city from the central plains, which are several metres under water in places.
Inner Bangkok has so far escaped major flooding as the authorities divert water to areas outside the main capital in a bid to prevent the Chao Phraya River bursting its banks and flooding the political and economic heartland.
But efforts to keep the city of 12 million people dry have been complicated by a seasonal high tide.
"Flood waters are coming from every direction and we cannot control them because it's a huge amount of water. We will try to warn people," said Yingluck, a political novice before taking office barely two months ago.
"This problem is very overwhelming. It's a national crisis so I hope to get cooperation from everybody," added the premier, who is the sister of fugitive former leader Thaksin Shinawatra.
Three months of heavy monsoon rains have killed 320 people, damaged the homes and livelihoods of millions of people, mostly in northern and central Thailand, and forced tens of thousands to seek refuge in shelters.
Currently, about one-third of Thailand's provinces are affected.
The opposition Democrats are calling on the government to declare a state of emergency to make it easier to control people and stop them damaging dykes to ease the flooding in their own areas.
Bangkok governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra -- a Democrat -- warned on Wednesday that seven districts in northern and eastern Bangkok were at risk of inundation because of a broken dyke.
He advised residents in those areas to unplug electrical appliances, move belongings to higher ground and study the city's evacuation plan, saying they had 24 hours to prepare for possible flooding.
The authorities have failed to protect a number of major industrial parks from the gushing brown water, which has inundated hundreds of factories, disrupting production of cars, electronics and other goods.
The government says more than half a million people have been left without work.
Most of Thailand main tourist attractions -- including the southern islands of Samui, Phuket and Phi Phi -- have been unaffected.
Bangkok's main airport is still operating as normal and its flood defences have been reinforced.
-- © Copyright AFP 2011-10-20
Posted 2011-10-20 11:58:11
Thai Floods Threaten Inner Bangkok
By Daniel Ten Kate and Supunnabul Suwannakij
BANGKOK: -- Thailand’s government warned that floodwaters may reach parts of inner Bangkok, sending stocks and the baht lower as the government struggles to control a deluge that has inundated thousands of factories.
A surge of water caused a 20-meter (65-feet) breach in a levy protecting a canal used for tap water that filters to downtown areas in the city of 9.7 million people, Chareon Passara, governor of the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority, told reporters today. Authorities have since managed to control the overflow, he said.
“The water level has receded this morning,” he said in a televised briefing. The water agency “can provide water with a standard that the World Health Organization certifies.”
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has vowed to protect the capital from floods that forced the closure of thousands of factories to the north that supply parts to companies such as Apple Inc. and Toyota Motor Corp. The nation’s worst flooding in five decades has killed 320 people and left millions scrambling for dry ground.
Thailand’s benchmark SET Index fell 2.4 percent as of 10:01 a.m. local time, the most in Asia. The baht weakened 0.7 percent to 30.91 per dollar. Big C Supercenter Pcl, the operator of hypermarket stores, fell 10 percent, while property developer Land & Houses Pcl dropped 13 percent.
The government earlier today warned residents living near Prapa canal, which runs from northern Bangkok to an area of the city near Victory Monument along the city’s elevated train line, to be vigilant against floodwaters.
‘Bangkok May be Swamped’
“If we can’t pump water out on time, there is a chance Bangkok may be swamped,” Pracha Promnog, head of the national flood center, said in a phone interview with Channel 3 today.
Suvarnabhumi Airport, Thailand’s main international airport, is operating normally and protected with a 3.5-meter barrier to prevent floods, Air Chief Marshal Sumet Phomanee, chairman of airport operator Airports of Thailand Pcl, said today by phone. In the worst-case scenario of the facility being flooded, airlines would be asked to relocate operations to the U-Tapao airport in the eastern province of Chonburi.
The situation is more "worrisome" near northern Bangkok’s Don Mueang airport, which is mostly used for domestic flights and where the government has set up operations to manage the floods, Sumet said. Residents in the area have parked cars on elevated highways and moved belongings to higher floors as waters threaten the district.
Rainfall about 25 percent more than the 30-year average filled upstream dams to their capacity, prompting authorities to release large amounts of water this month down a flood plain the size of Florida. The waters have affected 14,254 factories and businesses in 20 provinces, leaving 664,567 workers at risk of losing jobs, according to the Labor Ministry.
It will take about 40 days for the 12 billion cubic meters of water, enough to cover Connecticut a meter deep, to drain into the Gulf of Thailand, Irrigation Department spokesman Boonsanong Suchatpong said yesterday. The floods have swamped industrial estates north of the capital with as much as three meters of water.
-- businessweek.com 2011-10-20
Posted 2011-10-20 12:13:52
Here it comes! I don't care what you lot say. I am concerned now!
Posted 2011-10-20 12:18:57
Was there ever really any doubt by anyone with a working brain?
The thing of it is, this isn't the fault of the current government, but every government for the past 20+ years. Thailand is a country that has annual flooding. But it worsens each year when rampant deforestation is allowed for resorts and private mansions, which results is fewer trees and other types of growth which can soak up the rain, as well as provide stability for the soil. It happens when factories and housing estates are built in low lying areas, there by impeding the natural flow of water. And all of this is caused by the greed which permeates Thai society and thinking at every level. "Live for today, make as much money as you can, and who cares about tomorrow" should be the motto for Thailand, not "Land of Smiles". I don't see a lot of smiling going on now.
No, wait, I take that back. I see a few from those here in the north who are smiling and saying that it's about time that "precious Bangkok" is finally getting a taste of what the rest of the country has to deal with on an almost yearly basis.
This flood is a tragedy which I doubt any Thai government could effectively deal with, or could have prevented under the current circumstances. The loss of lives and property, as well as businesses is sad by any means. The best Thailand can hope for is that they will actually LEARN from this, and then take the necessary steps to develop a new water management program that will benefit ALL of Thailand, and not just BKK. Far too many in BKK think that they are the "center of the universe" when it comes to Thailand, and don't really care about the "provinces". Perhaps now they will wake up and realize that what happens in the provinces, CAN and WILL affect Bangkok.
Time will tell.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:22:26
Looking at the government's actions (inaction) to date I am sort of reminded of Nero fiddling while Rome burned..
Edited by bapak, 2011-10-20 12:23:06.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:26:47
Your first paragraph has some credibility.
The rest of your post fits right into the "burn Bangkok" mentality and contributes to the disunity issue that the current Govt claims to be trying to repair.
Did you ever think about where those workers in those industrial estates are from? It's not Silom Road.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:28:13
Doesn't Thailand have a navy? Even an aircraft carrier, are those 8 decommissioned subs from Germany there yet? With the best science brains, lead by the science minister, couldn't they just start the engines and fix this issue that is destroying so many peoples lives.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:31:20
With Respect, if Australia couldn't deal with their floods, and every possible action was taken, what hope does Thailand have ?
Posted 2011-10-20 12:32:25
The waters have affected 14,254 factories and businesses in 20 provinces, leaving 664,567 workers at risk of losing jobs, according to the Labor Ministry.
Urgent work to do !!!! and yet some idiot is counting specific numbers of business's and people who will be affected. TIT.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:34:04
Flood Center Warned Residents to Evacuate to Higher Grounds
The Flood Relief Operations Center has initiated the fourth warning to residents in four provinces and five districts in Bangkok to evacuate to higher ground with their possessions.
Justice Minister and Director of the Flood Relief Operations Center, General Pracha Promnok, has given the fourth warning to residents in affected areas to evacuate to higher ground with their possessions, due to continued runoff flowing into the Rapeepat Canal and the Rangsit Field.
Residents in four provinces have been warned to evacuate, including Pattumthani, Nakhon Pathom, Samut Prakan, and Nonthaburi Province, where the floodwater is now approximately 50 centimeters high.
Local residents in Bangkok's five districts, including Klong Sam Wa, Nong Jok, Minburi, Kannayow, and Lad Krabang District, have also been warned to evacuate, as the floodwater is now about one meter high where as Sai Mai and Bang Khen District are required to be closely monitored.
Furthermore, the Flood Relief Operations Center has initiated a fifth warning, and measures for victims to strictly follow.
The center has asked for cooperation from residents and operators to refrain from entering the Nawanakorn Industrial Park for safety reasons until the floodwater decreases to a safe level, as it is currently flooded with 3 meters of water.
Residents are asked not to worry about their possessions as the Flood Relief Operations Center will send police officers to take care of the items. Permission is required to enter the Estate areas.
-- Tan Network 2011-10-20
Posted 2011-10-20 12:34:19
At least I'm glad now, that my work forced me to relocate from BKK to Phuket last year.
Ok we have muggings and Tuk Tuks and constant overpricing, but at least we are dry.
I really hope for all of you living in BKK, that this will pass you by.
Best of luck and fingers crossed :-)
Posted 2011-10-20 12:34:36
I think Yingluck might resign soon. This is not what she signed up for. Her donning of US$350 Burberry boots to visit flood victims without a second thought typifies how far removed from reality she is and she may be close to a nervous breakdown by now, along with Kittirat who also looks close to breaking point in front of the cameras. The only senior PT minister who has not discredited himself in the flood crisis is Chalerm....
Posted 2011-10-20 12:35:37
The Thai government learning from this? Are you hallucinating? When do you remember a government in Thailand that "learns"? That would require humility, and the admission that something was being done wrong to begin with. Fat chance of that happening in our lifetimes.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:40:30
Roman contributions include;
Architectural styles : the Roman were inspired by the Greeks. But they were the ones to use extensively the arch, mosaics and frescoes. They built the largest free-standing dome in the world until the 20th century (the Pantheon in Rome, 43m of diametre, or 1m wider than the Bruneleschi's Duomo in Firenze).
Aqueducts and viaducts merit a separate category. They were the ancestors of modern viaduct (suspension bridges, etc.). Aqueducts would bring drinkable water from hundreds of kilometres away and were designed with just the right inclination so that the water would not run too fast (and erode the stone), nor too slow (and evaporate or become muddy). Combined with canalisations and sewers, they enabled a city like Rome to sustain a population of over 1 million.
The Romans developed spectator sports beyond anything seen until then. The Greeks invented the Olympic Games (incl. stadiums), but the Romans gave us the idea of mass entertainment.
The Roman highways were so straight, plane and resistant that some are still used nowadays (e.g. Via Appia). Many modern European highways follow the old Roman highways, as they used the most direct route to connect cities (and most Roman cities still exist nowadays).
Wine-making was not invented by the Romans, but they planted so many vines throughout the empire, that they created a tradition in France, south-western Germany and Mediteranean countries lasting to this day. The world's greatest wines are direct heirs to Roman wines.
The Roman weren't the first to come up with central or floor heating or hot baths, but they certainly spread its used across the empire. Ironically, it is the Japanese who are fans of hot springs and baths nowadays, not the Europeans. But famous thermal springs still exist in Europe, and were especially popular in the 19th century. Some have Roman origins.
The Roman Senate was supposedly founded by Romulus 2756 years ago. The Republic is "only" 2514 years old, but was one of the oldest such system in the world, and one that deeply influenced modern democratic states. The Greek idea of "democracy" is probably further from the current "democratic" system than was the elitist Roman Republic (in fact, politicians nowadays are almost always the same few oligarchs, like in Roman times).
The Julian Calendar, name after its inventor (Gaius Julius "Caesar"), is almost identical to the modern Western calendar reformed by Pope Gregory 1600 years later, and still used by many national Orthodox churches. It has/had all the current months, which names all have meanings in Latin : January (from "Janus", god of the beginning of times), February (from "Februa" a Roman festival), March (from "Mars", the god of war), April (from "aprire" meaning "open", referring to the blossoming of spring), May (from "Maia", goddess of the fertility), June (from "Juno", goddess of women and marriage, hence the expression "June bride"), July (from Julius Caesar himself), August (from emperor Augustus), September ("7th", as March was the 1st month at the time, and September was thus the 7th month), October ("8th"), etc.
The Romans seem to have been the ones to introduce the system of 3-course meal (starter, main dish, desert), inherited by most Western cultures. Note that in India, China, Japan, etc. there is no such tradition.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:40:41
Thai PM Says Floods In Parts Of Bangkok Inevitable...
That has been expected for quite some time - where is the news?
Posted 2011-10-20 12:41:37
Posted 2011-10-20 12:45:17
Why should she resign?
She did all the important tasks well. Protecting Shinawatra assets, bring family members in key positions and as soon as the water goes away there is a lot bribe money to make on repairing everything.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:46:13
well at least some one will make some money out of this
Posted 2011-10-20 12:46:24
The news is ..... a few hours earlier she said .... " PM: We will not allow Bkk to flood, but will have to use various canals/waterways to channel water into Gulf of Thailand /TAN_Network "
The issue is credibility in a crisis.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:47:27
"The only senior PT minister who has not discredited himself in the flood crisis is Chalerm...."
That's because he's been silent since the flood crisis has started.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:48:23
Edited by siampolee, 2011-10-20 12:49:33.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:50:25
As if there have not been any massive floods in Pakistan, India, the US, Germany, Poland, Italy, Spain, Australia... name it... it's a worldwide phenomena, no not a phenomena - this is the result of - yes "Live for today, make as much money as you can, and who cares about tomorrow..."
But ANYWHERE in the world... it's US, the so called "human being", killing, slaughtering, scavanging, deforestating, sealing of large areas with concrete structures ever bigger, taller and larger, diverting river, stopping their natural flow.... well where do we think this will end up in, in some magical hamonious new world?
Or in a giant mega catastrophy?
Well keep on drilling, digging, concreting, blasting, growing to make MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY, MONEY.... is the name of the game, NOTHING else is of value any more!
That is why WE ALL will have to pay the bill and it's delivered now....the bill for the "loss of our precious goods", which never ever belonged to us in the first place, will be much higher, but then, who cares?
take care everyone!
Edited by Samuian, 2011-10-20 12:57:42.
Posted 2011-10-20 12:51:17
What do you think the government is not doing that they should be doing?
Posted 2011-10-20 12:52:04
That is what would worry me the most....I would not feel safe at all..
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