Prachuap Khiri Khan Members of Parliament (MPs) are pushing for the opening of the Monsuan Reservoir in Bang Saphan to address the ongoing drought issue. The reservoir, which has undergone a decade-long reconstruction, has experienced multiple collapses in the Jason Basin.
On July 4, a complaint was received by a reporter regarding the repair of the Morsup Reservoir located in Moo 4, Chaikasem Subdistrict, Bang Saphan District, Prachuap Khiri Khan Province. The reservoir had become unusable after the ridge collapsed on August 10, 2019. In 2014, the Office of Water Resources Region 7, under the Department of Water Resources of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, invested 37.9 million baht to improve the reservoir, which has a capacity of 1.6 million cubic meters.
However, the basin encountered repeated problems with ridge leakage near the spillway, resulting in collapses that extended over 20 meters and were 5 meters deep. As a result, the reservoir cannot currently be used for storing water for consumption or agricultural purposes as intended, causing a water shortage for the residents of Ban Krut, as well as affecting agriculture in Thongchai Subdistrict and Chaikasem Subdistrict.
Mr. Pramual Phongthavoradet, MP for District 3, Prachuap Khiri Khan Province, stated that after assessing potential solutions to the problem with expert academics, the Department of Water Resources proposed utilizing the 2021 budget allocation of 102 million baht to strengthen and stabilize the foundation. A contractor was hired to carry out the project from February 2022 to February 2023, but the contract was later extended until June 30, 2023. However, it was discovered that the construction work was not yet completed. The contractor has addressed the issue at the dam crest, and it is anticipated that the project will be completed soon. If any further problems arise, a live inquiry will be raised in the House of Representatives. The renovation and restoration of the reservoir are crucial for normal water storage and play a significant role in alleviating drought conditions for the residents of the two sub-districts and Ban Krut, an important tourist attraction in the province.
Mr. Amporn Tothong, a 70-year-old contractor, revealed that he was hired by a project contractor to construct a concrete road on the dam crest. The work is expected to be finished and handed over to the company for project acceptance by July 5.
It has been reported that the original deadline for completing and delivering the project was June 30. Failure to meet this deadline would result in the company being fined over 100,000 baht per day. However, upon inspection, it was discovered that the project had not been completed, despite the sign in front of the reservoir indicating completion in June 2023. Concerned individuals in the area are demanding confirmation from the Office of Water Resources Region 7 in Ratchaburi and the Bang Saphan District Sheriff regarding the safety of the basin to prevent further leakage. They are also seeking clarification on the utilization plan for the Monsuan Reservoir, considering the substantial investment of 37.9 million baht that has yet to bear fruit due to the repeated collapses.