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Military fortifies headquarters

Military fortifies headquarters

The Army, Navy and Air Force yesterday started fortifying their Bangkok headquarters and activating contingency plans as defences against the impending inundation.

The Army headquarters, located on Rajdamnoen Avenue, has two flood plans, Colonel Wanchana Kerddee, a deputy spokesman, said yesterday.

As per the first plan, soldiers are filling 10,000 sandbags daily to build a dyke to protect the compound, and generators have been installed in case of a brownout. Should the first plan fail, the second plan would be to relocate headquarters to the Army Officers Club on Vibhavadi-Rangsit Highway, which is higher.

Defence Minister Yuthasak Sasiprapha will hold a meeting next Thursday to review the plans to safeguard military installations.

The flood risk to the Navy's headquarters perched on a bank of the Chao Phraya River was not from overflows, as its protective wall was adequate, but from the flow from Ayutthaya and Pathum Thani attacking from the rear, said Vice Admiral Taweewut Pongpipat, the Navy's deputy chief of staff.

The Navy would closely monitor the overland threat before deciding on its next step, he added.

The Air Force projected that in the worst-case scenario, its headquarters at Don Mueang Airport might be surrounded by about one metre of water, said Air Vice Marshal Monthon Satchukorn, a spokesman.

Plans were in place to relocate offices to upper floors of the six-storey headquarters building, he said.


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