Sangkhlaburi Mon bridge collapsed

The famous bridge Saphan Mon (Mon Bridge) in Sangkhlaburi, Thailand, North Kanchanaburi, partially collapsed on Sunday after four days of heavy rains and strong wind. This wooden building of traditional construction, the longest of its kind in Thailand was the main attraction of the city only visited by a few foreigners but really worth a visit.


Pont de Sangkhlaburi ecroule
Sangkhlaburi Mon bridge collapsed due to eavy rain(photo: The Trekman)

Despite its hundreds years of history, Sangkhlaburi is a new city. Indeed, following the construction of the Vajiralongkorn hydroelectric dam in 1984, the old Sangkhlaburi was demolished and the new city was founded on a higher place. All that remains from the old town are a semi-submerged Môn temple and basements of several buildings and temple structures. And of course, the eroded remains of the 400 years old pagoda near the impressive new temple of Wat Wang Wiwekaram. The wooden bridge was built in 1993 and was 850 meters long before 70 meters of its center collapsed. Fortunately, there were no casualties or injuries but seeing this legendary bridge half immersed in water is sade. It isolates Wang Kha village moved here after after the construction of a dam. Many Mons settled in Thailand after fleeing conflicts in Myanmar (Burma). For the moment no information was disclosed about when the reconstruction will be made. There will be a new bridge because it is necessary, but we can wonder if this collapse will result in rebuilding a stronger, more modern bridge, and therefore less vulnerable to bad weather conditions. With cement or steel. Sangkhlaburi would then lose its symbol. Without Saphan Mon typical tourism may decline. A dilemma may arise to choose how to rebuilt the bridge. The Mon will probably be attached to rebuild it with their traditionnel methods. We will see…

Mike Thailandee

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