Froc floats road drainage plan

he Flood Relief Operations Command (Froc) is looking at the possibility of digging channels into some roads in eastern Bangkok to help drain runoff from the north to the east of the capital and on to the sea.
The proposal is intended to ease the massive flow of floodwater bearing down on the capital's inner city areas.
The proposal has been put forward by a group of engineers and water resource management experts, led by Ninnart Chaithirapinyo, vice-chairman of Toyota Motor Thailand.
They met Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra at the Froc yesterday to discuss the proposal.
Mr Ninnart said experts from the group have agreed that five roads in eastern Bangkok are deemed as blocking the northern runoff.
Channels could be cut into the road surfaces to direct floodwater to the east of the capital and out to the sea.
The roads are Pracha Ruam Jai, Rat Uthit Road, Suwinthawong Road, Nimitr Mai Road and Ruam Phattana Road.Plans are to dig a channel of between 5m to 6m wide on each road to allow for floodwater to flow.Mr Ninnart said the private sector came up with the proposal because it had been found that water pumps and the drainage system in eastern Bangkok are not working to their fullest capacity. This is because the roads have blocked the runoff from reaching the areas where the water pumps are installed, Mr Ninnart said.
If the roads are cut through, they can help drain about 60 million cubic metres of floodwater a day, he said.
Mr Ninnart said the private sector will try to mobilise contractors to help with the work and that if the proposal is approved by the government, it is up to the government to assess the impact the project will have on residents on the roads.
If implemented, the project will help drain a substantial amount of water in the east of Bangkok out to the sea, thus easing the severity of floods threatening the capital's inner city areas. 
Speaking after the meeting, Ms Yingluck said she had told the group to discuss further details with the Transport Ministry, the Highways Department, the Royal Irrigation Department and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. She said she will call a meeting of authorities today to assess the possible impacts if the roadwork is to be carried out.
Transport Minister ACM Sukumpol Suwanatat said if the project is approved, repercussions from the proposed project on people "were inevitable".
Experts have been assigned to inspect the roads and study details.
"Someone must make sacrifices otherwise we cannot solve the problem involving a huge amount of water," ACM Sukumpol said.
He said that the roadwork should take about two hours.
Chawalit Chantararat, managing director of TEAM Group's water resources business unit, agreed with the idea.
However, he thinks the passage of 5m to 6m at each spot is not sufficient to control the huge amount of water.
He proposes to cut through the lower line of Khlong Hok Wa and all barriers between Khlong 8 and 9 _ in other words, to get rid of whatever obstruction there is between Khlong 8 and 9, thus turning it onto a floodway about 2km wide for water to flow into Klong Pra-ong Chaiwanuchit, then to Klong Dan and eventually into the sea.
A source at the Froc said several members of the command have disagreed with the proposal.
They are concerned that it would do more harm than good and that no clear explanations have been provided on how the proposed method would actually help drain floodwaters.
There has also been concern that the damaged roads would greatly affect nearby commuters in the area, the source said.
Deputy Bangkok governor Thirachon Manomaipibul yesterday said the Froc and City Hall had agreed that roadwork will be carried out on the Bangkok-Chon Buri motorway and the Bang Na-Trat road to dig a passage on each of the routes to allow northern runoff to drain out to the sea more quickly.
It has been found that water drainage channels have been blocked by the two routes, Mr Thirachon said.
Temporary bridges will be built over the sections of the two roads where the roadwork is done.The entire roadwork is expected to be finished in three days, Mr Thirachai said.
However, Seri Supparathit, an expert on natural disasters at Rangsit University, said the proposal is impractical because at present the water level in the Bang Pakong is higher than flood levels in Bangkok.
He said the best way is to dismantle flood barriers from khlongs 9-13 in Rangsit and use at least 10 powerful water pumps to drain the inflow of runoff.


...Posted By... Arakan Research Centre ...Date... Friday, October 28, 2011. ...Post Title... , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0

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