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WCC 2012 Singapore: The Flooding in Thailand: Lessons Learned When Preparing your Organizations for a Catastrophic Event


Keynote Speaker for World Continuity Congress 2012 Singapore

The Flooding in Thailand: Lessons Learned When Preparing your Organizations for a Catastrophic Event
Bhakorn Vanuptikul BCCE, Executive Vice President, Bangkok Bank, Thailand

During the flood in Thailand in October 2011, the 10 metre high water blockage in Nikom Rojna industrial estate collapse and this estate housed the many manufacturing plants.  The area continue to be not operational for a period due to the strong current that had interfered with the reconstruction effort. One of the major vehicle manufacturing plants, Honda, was left virtually inaccessible.  Thailand is the world’s 2nd largest producer of hard disk drives accounting for approximately 25% of the world’s production.  Many of the factories that make hard disk drives have been flooded, including Western Digital’s (largest producer and holding 32% of market share in the world), Toshiba (ranked fourth in the world), Seagate and Samsung.  The story continues to be similar for many other industries throughout Thailand.

For this year’s World Continuity Congress, Singapore, Bhakorn Vanuptikul will be talking about how The World Bank ranked the 2011 Floods of Thailand as the fourth costliest disaster in the history. It is only surpassed by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, 1995 Kobe earth quake and 2005 Hurricane Katrina.

The disaster caused the damages of over 45 billion USD and over 12 million people were effected while over 600 were killed, mostly from drowning or electrocution. Over 300,000 hectares (3,000 km2) of farm lands were flooded at one time or another and  7 industrial estates were inundated up to 2 meter of water. Over 800 factories were damaged and  1 million workers temporary or permanently lost their jobs. The flood also interrupted global supply chains of automobile and electronics industries.

This presentation will provide you with overview of the damages done, what were the contributing factors which could lead to the debate whether this flood is natural or man-made disaster. It will also cover the lessons learned from the crisis, and what would be the preparations you need to cope with such a large scale crisis that could affect your entire organization from people, work places, systems, communication and supply chains.

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The presenter Khun Bhakorn will be sharing:

  • A walkthrough of the escalation of of the disaster from its start till the receding of the high level of water in Bangkok;
  • With hindsight, how organizations should have prepared itself from the impending flood and even the flooding itself.  An example is the prior coordination with the civil authorities especially in the information dissemination;
  • How an organization had prepared itself for the flood? An example is the estimation of how high a wall should an organization build its level of sandbags;
  • What are the psychological issues that an organization must prepare itself for?  An example is the ordeal of waiting for the flood water to reach central Bangkok; and
  • What are the lesson learned from this national disaster.

About the Speaker

Bhakorn Vanuptikul is the Executive Vice President, Bangkok Bank Public Company Limited. He is responsible for the management of 300 staff supporting functions that cover from project design and construction to project management, security services, transportation fleet, stationary storage and logistics, document storage and warehouses. He is also responsible for the development of the Operational Risk Management of the Enterprise Operation as well as the Business Continuity Planning for the Enterprise.

He obtain his Master of Landscape Architecture, Graduate School of Design, Harvard University and a Bachelor of Architecture (1st Class Honors), Chulalongkorn University.

About World Continuity Congress 2012

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Author: moh_heng

Dr Goh Moh Heng is the Managing Director of GMH Continuity Architects and President of Business Continuity Management (BCM) Institute.

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