The Royal Irrigation Department (RID) is using 1,200 gabions - soil-filled cylindrical objects that function somewhat like sandbags - to repair the breached Bang Chomsri sluice gate in Sing Buri, the department's Water Monitoring Analysis Centre said yesterday.
Meanwhile, flood-affected residents of Pathum Thani's Lam Luk Ka district yesterday tore down an earthen levee near the sluice gate across Canal 10. A stand-off developed between authorities and locals, who want the sluice gate across Canal 9 to remain open and those in canals 8 and 10 to be re-opened, said provincial Deputy Governor Lerkiat Kaeosrichan.
RID brought machinery and workers to repair the gate in Sing Buri and expected work to be complete tomorrow. The department insisted that water flowing through the breached gate would not raise the level of flood water in Tha Wung district of Lop Buri, which has receded to around 80 centimetres.
Other breached parts of dykes along the east bank of the Chao Phraya River in flood-affected provinces have been repaired to reduce water flow into residential areas. Ten of 11 breaches have been completely fixed. RID expects to finish the restoration of all parts by November 15, and said the work has helped reduce flood water levels in areas of Nakhon Sawan, Chai Nat, Sing Buri and Lop Buri.
In Lop Buri's Ban Mee district, the level of the Bang Kham River has receded by one metre. Villagers have been unable to return to their residences, however, as water levels there are still high.
Concerns remain high in Ban Mee over the breached Bang Chomsri sluice gate. Village heads in some tambon of the district held a meeting yesterday to discuss how to deal with the huge volume of water flowing through the gate in case RID's repair attempts failed.
The protest in Lam Luk Ka by flood-hit residents living near Pathum Thani's canals 8, 9 and 10 occurred after the closure of the sluice gates across canals 8 and 10 led to a rapid 10-cm increase in the level of the flood water there. Residents fear that if the Canal 9 sluice gate is closed, the level will be even higher, Lerkiat, the deputy governor, said.
Authorities were negotiating with local leaders and would inform the Flood Relief Operations Centre of developments, he said.
Nonthaburi police yesterday boarded a boat to inspect the Prapa (waterworks) canal in an attempt to prevent people destroying barriers along it.
Police officers have been deployed to guard the barriers, which have not been damaged so far.
|Thailand's worst flooding in decades
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