Thailand’s Fine Arts Department has installed flood barriers along the Chao Phraya River, to protect two ancient temples in the Ayutthaya historical park from rising water levels which are threatening to overflow the riverbanks.
Fine Arts Department Director-General Phanombut Chantarachot said yesterday (Wednesday) that, although the historical park is still safe from flooding, the department is closely monitoring the water level in the Chao Phraya River and has taken the precautionary step of installing flood barriers at two ancient temples, Chaiwatthanaram and Thammaram, which are located in low-lying areas and are at risk of being flooded by overflows.
The water level is now 70cm and 80cm below the top of the banks at Chaiwatthanaram and Thammaram temples respectively, he said, adding that the installation of temporary flood barriers is due to be completed today.
He said that department officials have also been monitoring water levels in other rivers and canals flowing through Ayutthaya province and have checked several archaeological sites, which have previously been flooded, to make sure that water pumps and heavy machinery are in place.
Marine Department officials based in Ayutthaya have issued advice to tug boats operating on the Chao Phraya and Pasak rivers to limit the number of barges they are towing to three and to ensure that the barges are not overloaded. Skippers are also advised to wear life jackets all the time.
Meanwhile, in Mueang district of the eastern province of Prachin Buri, officials have erected a sandbag flood wall around Chao Phraya Abhaibhubejhr Hospital, after surrounding areas became flooded by river overflows.
In Lom Sak district of the northern province of Phetchabun, the water level in the Pasak River is receding gradually, as no rain fell in the upper reaches of the river last night. Overflows from the previous days are, however, now spreading, inundating widespread areas, including the commercial area and hospitals.
People living in Mueang and other districts, downstream of Lom Sak district, have been advised by the provincial administration to brace for possible flooding in the next few days.