Girl's Death Causes Safety Concerns Over Water-Gates

The canal sluice gate at Khlong Koo, Pathum Thani Province, with the sign warning residents not to approach the gate due to leaked electricity.

(26 September) A four year old girl was killed, her body severed, after she fell into Tha Rua Sluice in Ban Pho District, Chachoengsao province.

According to reports, the girl fell of the bridge which lies across Khlong (Canal) Prawet Buri Rom. Her mother then called for help from the rescue team, but later discovered her daughter’s headless body in the water. The girl′s other limbs were also dismembered by the water-gate fan.

Mr, Samroeng Rungsiri, 59, permanent officer of the Royal Irrigation Department and the victim’s grandfather, told police that his granddaughter was walking toward him, with her mother and grandmother accompanying her from afar. The girl then suddenly fell off the bridge and ended up in the tragic incident.

Autopsy for the child’s body is expected to be conducted as soon as the team gathers other parts of her body. So far, police had ruled the case to be an accident, and have not pressed charges against anyone.

Meanwhile in Pathumthani province, Ms. Bupha Phuangphut, 48, form Sam Khok District, made complaints to Khaosod to urge related authorities to be responsible for the electricity leakage at a Khlong Koo, which has killed a number of fish in the water resource.

Local residents had tried to prevent any lethal accident from happening by posting a sign warning by-passers not to get in the water in the area. However, Ms. Bupha said she is still worried as there might be some children who were not aware of the danger and might get themselves killed.

There are many people fishing nearby during holidays, which could be dangerous, according to Ms. Bupha, adding that many people had been injured from the leaked voltage in the area before.

Ms. Bupha hoped that her complaints would convince the Electricity Authority to inspect the area and remedy the situation as soon as possible.

These incidents have raised concern over safety of the canal water sluice gates in many areas, especially in the moment when a quarter of Thailand′s provinces are facing severe flooding.