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  1. #1
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    My Trek to Ayutthaya

    I just got back from my trek to Ayutthaya. My GF's sister lives right in the heart of the devastation and we wanted to get them supplies and check on their well being.

    The day started out at 9:30am by catching a bus to Victory Monument, Then from VM a van to Rangsit, Then another van to the first roadblock on freeway. We caught the local bus to the next checkpoint then it was military cargo carrier to her sisters. What a trek. we arrived at 2pm. It actually was quite a fun trip.

    As for the devastation in the area, the local news simply does not reflect the true hardship these folks are enduring. The water is anywhere from .5 to 3 meters deep. There are no creeks anymore, the entire area is one big river/lake. Its all flowing but it is like an ocean everywhere you look. It will be months before this recedes to a level of normalcy. People are living on over passes, in tents, in boats, on roofs. A great portion of people can only reach their homes by boat. Of course every rain event just replenishes the waters.

    Here is a small sample of the pictures I took with my GF























    I will upload more pictures tomorrow. I rode my GF's sisters Motorcy along the main highway to the end where it is now impassable

  2. #2
    Sprayed On Member
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    Good pics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mykinos
    looters? vermin in the water? supplies?
    My brother in law and his family left my place today to go back to their house in Auttaya because they are worried about these issues.

  3. #3
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    We've got some refugee's from Ayuddhaya staying locally. Ten people, sharing a modest house. The farang husband has gone overseas back to work, and was heard to say that was the first time he looked forward to it. All credit to the Thai family and village support network though.
    probes Aliens

  4. #4
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    Great pics and I was wrong about the level of ineptitude displayed by the authorities responsible for the management of water. They've really outdone themselves this year.

  5. #5
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    Hmmm, I think its time for JJ to franchise in Ayutthaya.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog View Post
    Great pics and I was wrong about the level of ineptitude displayed by the authorities responsible for the management of water. They've really outdone themselves this year.
    Except the dutch, could anyone hope to divert this amount of flooding. Rich nations like the USA, GB, Canada have major flooding each year. No-one can cope when nature decides to outdo itself. Having said that even the Phuket News is having a go at the ineptitude and corruption of the authorities as the infrastructure continues to slide towards the Ocean.

  7. #7
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    All things considered every agency is doing a fantastic job in supporting the people displaced. Until you see it in person you cannot appreciate how much water is really there and how fast its all moving. I did not hear of much looting. Primarily as you are either underwater or not and if not, you're home. The stuff underwater is destroyed and really of no value.

    My GF's sister is very lucky. For some reason their small neighborhood was built on a high spot and the water diverted around it(like an Island). They have sustained no water damage. The neighborhood has established co-ops and all are working together to manage supplies, the garbage, the safety of children etc. There are a few make shift "ports", if you will, where people come in boats to gather up things then trek back across what is now one of many new lakes in the area. People were in great spirits and everybody was smiling. I drove the motorcy around passable areas with GF and niece on back. Met lots of folks. In fact sat on overpass and watched people fish. Thai guy even offered me a Ice Cold Leo as we sat on overpass. The fishing was very active.

    I rode to where the Asia highway is impassable. It is a sight to see. Incredible amount of water. My GF's sisters company is underwater and she will be out of work for months, Their daughters High School is closed and it too is also underwater and will be closed for some time. Her husband is working modified shifts to try and get water out of the facility. However it seems futile, the rain comes and the water rises and breeches the sand bags they put in place to secure it. They add another 2 feet or so and the water rises just above it. Water seems to rise by the hour.

    One thing I had no worries about is dysentary or bacteria in the water at this time. It is all moving at a high rate and not much is standing. The PPM based on volume of water in the area it simply cannot be an issue. The Military has been good about getting the local garbage.

    Accessibility by car is not allowed, you will be stopped at first check point. Regular 2 wheel drive trucks have limited access as well. There are lots of well equipped "Wheelers" in the area assisting people to get back and forth along with military troop carriers. It is not easy to get to where her sister lives, many pockets of extremely deep water covering the road(1+ meter deep). They live ~10kms north of the Tesco right off the Asia Hiway.

    I established a list of some supplies they need and we will trek back there again probably tomorrow. This time I am taking my fishing gear.

    a Few more pics



    ^Why cars cannot pass. This was 2nd overpass heading North.



    ^Driving along the Asia Hiway and then motor water and a yet another new lake.



    ^End of the Asia Hiway....For now



    ^Military trying to divert water.

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
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    Great pictures of the horror of flooding JP. Me & the missus were going to head over there too - do a little volunteering but cut off by the floods in An Thong so we're helping out 'round the house. Shifted some relief supplies with my Poo Yai. Her daughter was just held up at their business by gun-weilding kemoys. Tough times, man...

  9. #9
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    Now they are saying it has broken through big time and is heading for Muang Ake and all the klongs along the road from Future Park to Nakorn Naiyoke. Hells bells they dont have a clue what they are doing. They may be trying hard but there is still no coordination. This one affects me as my kids are now downtown at a birthday party, and the water is heading towards me. I am only 5 kilometers from Muang Ake. But we are on higher ground.

  10. #10
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    Some worsening news, My GF's Sister called and the water rose nearly a foot or more today and access to her home has been cut off. Not even 4wds unless with lift kits and large tires to clear the 1 meter+ of water crossing the Aisia Hiway.

    Now Navanakorn Estates are evacuating as the wall broke and the water is rushing into the area.

    Quote Originally Posted by aging one
    Hells bells they dont have a clue what they are doing. They may be trying hard but there is still no coordination.
    In fairness the volume of water and which direction it will go is probably the largest challenge. Sand bags and tarps is clearly not the answer but there are simply no resources here to manage it any other way. They divert it one way and it finds another. I mean it is a a lot of water.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2
    In fairness the volume of water and which direction it will go is probably the largest challenge.
    No. In fairness they're trying to shut the stable door after the horse has bolted. It's not the efforts now that are being criticised but the complete stupidity from the authorities that have led up to this terrible event.

    For example, poor reserviour management, road building that causes 1,000s of acres of floodplains to be cut off and unusable, and various water management areas authorities not working together to lessen the problem in general, rather than just trying to 'block' the water from entering their zone of influence.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2
    Some worsening news, My GF's Sister called and the water rose nearly a foot or more today and access to her home has been cut off.
    All I can do is wish everyone affected good luck and to stay safe,

    Having been flooded out 2 weeks ago I know the horrible feeling hundreds of thousands of wet souls are going through.

    And a great thread JP. Thanks for risking life and limb to get these pictures to us.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2
    Some worsening news, My GF's Sister called and the water rose nearly a foot or more today and access to her home has been cut off.
    All I can do is wish everyone affected good luck and to stay safe,

    Having been flooded out 2 weeks ago I know the horrible feeling hundreds of thousands of wet souls are going through.

    And a great thread JP. Thanks for risking life and limb to get these pictures to us.
    You are all are welcome on the pics, I was glad to help my GF's sister and family but now feel a bit helpless as we cannot get back to them with Rangsit and Pathum Thani flooding. We are looking at other routes but nothing is working out.

    Until you are wading in nearly waste deep water everyday to get somewhere you do not realize just how bad it is.

    I agree, anyone affected by the flooding I wish you the best.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mykinos View Post
    how long is this going to last? as in days or weeks time projectory?
    My GF says that the heaviest rain is now through mid to end of Nov. So I think those folks affected are in for a quite a battle. Hopefully it will let up but the ground is so saturated that it simply must either flow to the Chaopraya river or evaporate. Neither way is a quick process.

  15. #15
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    I go along with Marmite. Many months ago authorities were "advised" by a "well known and respected expert" to clean up the canals, remove the weeds and water lilies and the hovels on their banks. A quick flurry of activity and then silence - the canals are silted up but could have moved a lot of water had they been dredged and maintained properly. It would be criminal if the authorities did nothing after this catastrophe. I look at LA and see the huge drainage canals which lay dry until the rains come. This is what Thailand must do - prepare for the worst - and maintain them for when they are needed. I'm inclined to believe that Kevin Costner had it right in "Water World"!!

  16. #16
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    I was sat watching the floods on TV today in a nice restaurant with the Mrs. I think they were showing Sisiket in Isaan.

    She mentioned sending clothes and money, anyone know how to go about this ?



    this pic says it all for me. Thais normally have a smile for every occasion. I don't see one here

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmite the Dog View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by JPPR2
    In fairness the volume of water and which direction it will go is probably the largest challenge.
    No. In fairness they're trying to shut the stable door after the horse has bolted. It's not the efforts now that are being criticised but the complete stupidity from the authorities that have led up to this terrible event.

    For example, poor reserviour management, road building that causes 1,000s of acres of floodplains to be cut off and unusable, and various water management areas authorities not working together to lessen the problem in general, rather than just trying to 'block' the water from entering their zone of influence.

    I am a Road/Drainage designer by trade. You are quite correct when stating new road building is affecting and redirecting traditional water flow across the floodplains. Very similar to what has happened in Bangkok when they filled and built upon the old klongs.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabaii sabaii
    She mentioned sending clothes and money, anyone know how to go about this ?
    most superstores have places to donate things for the floods.

    the wife gave a few hundreds baht worth of water... she didn't like my 'i think they have enough water you evil cow!' joke. too soon i guess.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mykinos View Post
    can people get out though to bkk? a thai family i know are stranded bricked up there, last i heard the water was knee deep and rising, scary stuff. no electricity so can't charge mobiles and the landlines/internet down. enough food and water to pull through for a bit but they want out. almost a gunfight few days ago as some neighbours dug a hole in their dyke. lots of stories behind the scenes such as your trek.

    for most of us in another country its like watching a movie, guess disney won't be doing it though.
    Getting out of Ayutthaya to BKK would prove to be a challenge to the great majority(passed the Tesco on the Asia Hiway). The transportation is limited. Most are living on local food supplies, sleeping and living on roofs. Most get around by donated plastic boats. Areas that are still dry and above water are central points for all to check in, get supplies that were dropped off. There are quite a few locals making daily passes in boats by peoples houses to check on their well being. There is not much to do but watch the days come and go and the water pass by.

    I spoke with GF's sister this AM. The water has risen even more and they are now completely isolated from any chances to get out. But again she says they are dry, their house above water and have power. So its just a wait it out deal.

  20. #20
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    The wrath of mother nature has taken it's toll on these folks. It is a crying shame that with the year in and year out same old same old floods that a plan for the containment of the water that restricts the devastation caused is not implemented.

  21. #21
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    it's making news here in Canada

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    Thank you for sharing these wonderful pictures.
    I fear that this is just a foretaste of what is going to happen to us all.
    If the planet was flat and we had no polar icecaps it would be covered by an ocean with a depth of 2 kilometers. We really need to take care as a species. The water level is rising everywhere as the polar icecaps are melting. This may be a natural event but more likely it is caused by global warming, the burning of fossil fuels. We need a global solution and a more enlightened approach than that of the former president Bush who said
    "Global warming. We cannot afford it. It costs jobs."

  23. #23
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    What is actually more concerning to me is that while they fight it at the front the measures seem futile. The waters are rising in Ayutthaya. That water will go somewhere and right down the same way all the other water went but more of it.

    The sand bags are not going to be enough and are not going to hold. Think of the pressure of the water it is expected to hold back. They will fall at some point. And while they may divert it, it fills the sewers and blows up through man holes and floods on the other side of the sandbag blockades. I saw man holes flowing full volume up and out as if it was being pumped.

    Saddle up, everybody on the north side of the Chaopraya River will likely flood until it hits the ocean, the question is how bad?

  24. #24
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    Yes, GF's sister lives right by the farthest you can go on the Asia Hiway. We get updates 2 times a day. Morning and evening. They have announcements and she reports to us

  25. #25
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    Everyday the Military rolls in an makes announcements manually being as you noted, cell contact is out in various areas. Actually cell signal is OK, most have no power to charge their phones.

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