Rescue workers from Kusoldharm Patong station and Patong Police were called to the scene at about 3pm.
Also soon to arrive at the scene were Phuket Vice Governor Vikrom Jakthee, Patong Mayor Chalermsak Maneesri, Patong Police Chief Col Sujin Nilabodi and officers from the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM).
The man, so far named by officials as Mr Mahana, age given as 35-40 years old, was working in the excavated area below storm drain when two sections “fell”, officials reported.
No explanation was given as to why Mr Mahana was working in the danger area or what support was in place to prevent the sections of storm drain from “falling”.
Mr Mahana was trapped under one of the sections, He was pinned under water that was some 1.2 metres deep.
Fellow workers rushed to help him, but were unable to lift the storm drain section enough to free him.
It took about an hour for a crane to be safely positioned in order to lift the fallen storm drain section and recover Mr Mahana’s body, officials reported.
Mr Mahana was working on a project under the control of the Public Works and Town Planning and Country Planning Department (DPT). The project is to install large storm drains to prevent flooding in the central area of Patong. The project contract is for 120 days, from July 25 to Nov 21.
The traffic division of Patong Police have closed the section of Phra Metta Rd where the accident happened for fear that more ground may give way at the site.
Drivers can make a U-turn in front of Patong Hospital and the Porn Karnfaifa shop.
Patong Municipality and Patong Police had placed barriers and signs at the site to warn motorists that the section of road is closed.
Rat-U-Thit 200 Pi Rd has now been designated a two-way road from the Sai Namyen Intersection to the Jungceylon shopping mall.