The Great Flood of 2011 Should Not Repeat In 2021

Thailand will not face a repeat of the 2011 floods that devastated the country, according to experts and government officials.
Public concern about the flood situation, which has wreaked havoc in several parts of the country, is being addressed.
Several water retention areas have been created, and a systematic water management system is in place to deal with the situation and store floodwater during the dry season.
“I have instructed provincial governors and the Interior Ministry to be ready to help flood victims,” he said.
In his remarks, he stressed the importance of timely flood alerts and preparing food, drinking water, and relief supplies for the quick delivery to flood victims.
The executive director of the Geo-Informatics and Space Technology Development Agency (Gistda), Pakorn Ataphant, said several factors will prevent a repeat of the 2011 flooding.
As compared to 2011, Thailand was battered by several storms, rather than the current situation in which only a few storms have arrived.
According to him, aerial photographs from 2011 showed about 25 million rai of land was flooded, but aerial photographs taken in 2021 showed about 2.5 million rai underwater.
After the 2011 flood, water management plans have improved significantly, with the construction of flood levees and the addition of 160,000 rai of water retention areas, Pakorn said.
Flooding will not be severe except in coastal communities, where shallow floodwaters may reach 30 cm, but this will drain away within a few days. In 2011, economic and industrial areas were not affected,” Pakorn said.
The Natural Disaster Warning Council released an assessment of the current flood situation compared to the 2011 floods earlier this week.
Pramote Maiklad, the vice-chairman of the foundation and former director-general of the Royal Irrigation Department (RID), said the water level in the country’s four major dams is low compared with 2011. Therefore, a repeat of 2011 is unlikely.
Similarly, Sutat Weesakul, director of the Hydro-Informatics Institute, said two major dams — Bhumibol Dam and Sirikit Dam — are currently half full.
The dams still have enough capacity to take in more water in the case of two more storms, he said, adding the level of the Chao Phraya River is still low thanks to the construction of high embankments along the river.
As Sakchai Boonma, the deputy governor of Bangkok, explained, much of the water run-off from the North will not reach Bangkok, as the RID will divert it to Chachoengsao, Prachin Buri, and Ayutthaya.
“People in Bangkok and the surrounding provinces shouldn’t worry,” he said.
Meanwhile, Pasak Jolasid Dam officials in Lop Buri on Wednesday sent a warning letter to the five downstream provinces of Lop Buri, Saraburi, Ayutthaya, Pathum Thani, and Nonthaburi, saying the dam was holding 953 million cubic meters on Wednesday morning, or 99.27% of its capacity. The dam would need to speed up water discharges.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and cabinet ministers handed out relief supplies to flood victims in Chaiyaphum’s Muang district.
The premier also inspected flood management operations in the northeastern province.
He also expressed concern for tens of millions of farmers whose farmland has been damaged by flooding, adding that the government will come up with measures to fix the economy, eradicate poverty, and boost incomes.

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