Dewatering pumps technology used in Thai cave rescue


In a tragic story of 12 boys and their coach being trapped in a flooded cave in Thailand, dewatering pumps technology found it’s way into the rescue efforts, thanks to Kirloskar Brothers’ Limited (KBL), an Indian firm with unmatched expertise in dewatering.

The firm deployed dewatering pumps experts from their offices in India, Thailand and the United Kingdom to offer technical know-how and advice the rescue team involved in the operation. The KBL also offered to provide four specialised high capacity Autoprime dewatering pumps, which were kept ready at Kirloskarvadi plant in Maharashtra to be airlifted to Thailand

How dewatering is done

The process of dewatering involves the extraction and removal of water from a construction site, a riverbed, a mine shaft, or in this case, a cave. Dewatering is best carried out before operation begins in a particular area. Whereas there are several ways of going about it, most people employ the services of either a submersible pump or vertical turbine pump.

In construction sites, dewatering pump is most suitable for use in areas where the foundation of a building is below the water table level.

Also read: Best construction dewatering management and practices

There are several ways to use dewatering pumps to remove water from an area. However, the most common procedure involves digging a deep hole in the area and inserting a round liner with slots around the sides. This will allow ground water to seep through. A submersible pump is then placed at the bottom of the hole, to send the water out when it rises to a certain level.

On the other hand, some construction projects use a ring of such wells around the construction site. These may stay in continuous operation until the foundation of the building is complete and a water removal system such as a sump pump has been installed.

Another viable method is the insertion of a series of small, 50-mm tubes down into the ground. An above-ground dewatering pump will then be used to draw the water out through the tubes. This can be done in stages, first from the ground level, and again later when the walls of the foundation have placed.