B20m plan unveiled to expand Phuket’s Bang Neow Dum reservoir

Construction News
Bang Neow Dum reservoir last Thursday (Mar 28). Photo: Phuket Irrigation Office

B20m plan unveiled to expand Phuket’s Bang Neow Dum reservoir

PHUKET: A B20-million plan to expand the capacity of Bang Neow Dum reservoir in Srisoonthorn is in motion to help prevent further water-supply shortages during future extended dry spells across Phuket.

1 April 2019

Irrigation Office 15 Director Parinya Sakkanayok confirmed the news to The Phuket News today (April 1) following his inspection of Bang Neow Dum reservoir last Thursday (Mar 28).

As chief of Irrigation Office 15, Mr Parinya is the leading government official responsible for water resources development in the seven provinces in Upper Southern Thailand: Chumphon, Surat Thani, Nakhon Sri Thammarat, Ranong, Phang Nga, Krabi and Phuket.

“Bang Neow Dum reservoir will have added capacity by making the walls higher and by excavating the inside of the reservoir,” Mr Parinya told The Phuket News today (April 1).

“We are drawing up the plans to make sure the action is suitable for the Bang Neow Dum reservoir. I have already submitted this project to the Royal Irrigation Department in Bangkok. We need the budget to be approved before we can start,” he said.

As a secondary measure in the hope of starting the project as quickly as possible, a request for budget funds has been filed with Phuket Governor Phakaphong Tavipatana.

“We don’t know how much we will get from the Phuket Provincial budget. If Phuket Governor Phakaphong approves, this project can start faster, and be completed within a couple of months. This part of the project will be handled by the Phuket Irrigation Office,” Mr Parinya explained.

Mr Parinya explained that the B20mn required is for the excavation of the main reservoir at Bang Neow Dum only.

“We need this as quickly as possible, before the heavy rains start,” he said.

“Later, we want to install weirs around the reservoir to hold water which can be used later when needed. The lack of weirs at the reservoir is one of the reasons it has not held enough water to last the dry season,” Mr Parinya said.

Phuket Provincial Irrigation Office Director Somsawat Chaisinsod praised the move to expand the capacity of the Bang Neow Dum, which serves heavily populated estates in the central Phuket area.

“This project will help us to store more water for use in the years to come,” he told The Phuket News this afternoon.

Mr Somsawat also gave updated water levels at Phuket’s three main reservoirs

“Bang Wad reservoir in Kathu currently contains some 1.64 million cubic meters of its 10mn-plus m3 capacity,” Mr Somsawat said.

“Bang Neow Dum reservoir contains about 1.25mn m3 of water, and the Khlong Kratha reservoir in Chalong currently contains about 1.21mn m3 of water,” he added.

Of note, the water reserves at the three main reservoirs given by Mr Somsawat today differ greatly from those delivered by Governor Phakaphong during a press conference only last week.

Despite recent rainfall over the weekend and scattered showers across the island today, Mr Somsawat maintains that the rains enjoyed so far will not be enough to replenish the three main reservoirs to see Phuket residents with enough water supply through to when the annual rains return with the southwest monsoon, usually in May.

“The weather forecast does not show much more rain for this week. The reservoirs will be refilled only when the annual rains return,” he said.

“To really make a difference, we need about 200mm of rainfall per day for about three to five days,” Mr Somsawat added.

“This why getting access to many smaller privately owned water sources is so important,” he explained.

Mr Somsawat noted that his office has drafted a new water resources development plan that he says will prevented Phuket from facing the same water-supply shortages that have plagued residents this year.

Details of the plan are to be made available later.

Source: https://www.thephuketnews.com/b20mn-plan-unveiled-to-expand-bang-neow-dum-reservoir-70933.php#FlWX2BTajv62d7rJ.99