Lorry leak near Mekong raises contamination fears – etcnews.online


Picture courtesy Of Prachatai English

A lorry incident In Laos, Which resulted In a sulphuric acid leak into a tributary Of the Mekong River, Has sparked concerns about potential water contamination along the Thailand-Laos border. However, the water quality In This stretch Of the river was deemed safe yesterday, April 8, With continuous monitoring set to persist until the end Of the week.

Somsak Thepsutin, Deputy Prime Minister And head Of the Thai National Mekong Committee, announced yesterday, That he Had directed the Office Of the National Water Resources to keep a close eye on the river for possible contamination. The Leaked chemical substance’s potential impact on the residents Of both countries was a primary concern.

Somsak noted That the Thai National Mekong Committee Is actively collaborating With the Mekong River Commission Secretariat (MRCS) And the Lao government to manage the situation. He pinpointed the incident’s location In Luang Prabang, Laos, approximately 340 kilometres from Thailand’s Loei province. The authorities anticipated That the substance would reach Loei via the river within three days.

In conjunction With the Pollution Control Department, the Office Of the National Water Resources Has been gauging the water quality. They found the water to hold a pH scale measurement Of 8, indicating a safe level, according to Somsak.

He further confirmed That the authorities would persist In monitoring the Mekong’s water quality at three specific locations within Loei’s districts Of Chiang Khan And Pak Chom. This monitoring would occur twice daily, at 9am And 3pm, And continue until Friday.

Somsak urged caution for residents In several Other provinces, including Nong Khai, Bueng Khan, Nakhon Phanom, Amnat Charoen, And Ubon Ratchathani, advising them to be on the lookout for signs Of contamination.

The Governor Of Loei, Chaiphot Charoonphong, assured That authorities would maintain their efforts to keep the public informed. For the time being, he confirmed That people could continue to swim, fish, And partake In the annual Songkran festival’s water-splashing tradition using water from the river.

The contamination scare was triggered last Wednesday when a lorry carrying over 30 tonnes Of sulphuric acid capsized, resulting In the leakage into the Nam Khan River That subsequently feeds into the Mekong River, reported Bangkok Post.

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