The Great Flood

It looks like that the shit might hit the fan again or in this case the water reaching flood levels...

In late July 2011 massive amounts of water began to come down from the North slowly towards Bangkok...

That period also being the monsoon season made it only worse. (*)

The ice cream vendor continued his business as usual (until the water level got even higher).


Northern, northeastern, and central provinces along the Mekong and Chao Phraya rivers got flooded.

September 2011: Preparing for the worst, filling sandbags...


In September we already experienced some flooding in our neighborhood, but thanks to sandbags and plastic sheets in front of the door we managed to keep our house dry.

Barricading our door with wooden planks, clay, and more, it worked!


In October though the water level had reached such a high level that Ayutthaya got swamped, dams couldn’t cope anymore…

Building dams in the back alleys of our mooban.


For Bangkok, the decision was made to protect the city at all costs.

Some people just constructed a concrete wall in front of their houses!


This partly worked but at great cost, all excess water was pumped out into the surrounding areas which caused massive flooding for several months.

Pumps like these helped a lot with getting rid of the excess water.


Our mooban initially seemed to hold up thanks to the front and back gates being barricaded with sandbags.

Sandbag dam in front of the main entrance of our mooban.


However one day part of the village’s surrounding wall collapsed and water came rushing in.

Our sois changed into khlongs...


At our house, the sandbag ‘dam’ in front of the door worked fine, but then suddenly water came spurting out of the bathroom and kitchen drains…

We tried to move as much stuff upstairs as possible but didn't manage to get everything of course...

Having a private swimming pool in our living room really sucked!


As a result, our area stayed inundated for almost 2 months!

Wat Sri Ruangbun's surrounding wall couldn't handle it anymore.

For a while, this elevated wooden walkway was in use until the water level got too high.

Some locals started a taxi boat service!

Abandoned cars were everywhere.

At the Kanchanapisek - Rattanathibeth junction.

There was a huge demand for boats like these...

Another section of that rickety wooden walkway...

Whatever kind of truck could take on people, they usually did.

Exploring the neighborhood by boat...

In the back of a pick-up truck.

Our house in the background with my wife's motorcycle still high and dry!

This alternative form of transport I saw only once!

View over Kanchanapisek road, on the left is now Central Westgate!

A lot of the expressway ramps became parking lots...

November 2011, the water level was finally going down.

Over 2 months submerged furniture came back to life...

Our cat, Peep, observing damaged goods being put out in the streets...

For about a week everybody was busy cleaning out their houses, a hell of a job!

Back in September, I thought that this would keep our house dry, wishful thinking indeed...

Getting in and out was a bit complicated as well ;-)


Now we are 10 years ahead and it looks like history is going to repeat itself…

More housing estates have popped up like mushrooms in Bangkok’s surrounding countryside and make it even more difficult for water to flow through.

Hopefully, we’re not going to see a repeat of the ridiculous hundreds of boats placed in the Chao Phraya River to accelerate the flow and drainage of the basin action…

Instead of praying we better start planning about what to move from the ground floor upstairs again!

So far people haven't been that impressed by the government's advice: pray for the flood to stay away...

The full clip can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjZhKIH45Tw


Artist's Impression:


(*) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_Thailand_floods

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