Pro Property Partners
333 at the beach Pro Property Partners British International School, Phuket
The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

Login | Create Account | Search

Darasamut Underpass ‘never fully maintained’, says election candidate

Darasamut Underpass ‘never fully maintained’, says election candidate

PHUKET: The essential safety equipment in the Darasamut Underpass, including the pumps, have never had a full overhaul, a candidate for the upcoming election has claimed.

By The Phuket News

Wednesday 10 May 2023, 03:14PM

Wongsakorn ‘Bank’ Chanakit, the Bhumjaithai Party candidate for Phuket District 2 in the national election this Sunday (May 14), made the claim during an inspection of the work to install a new pump at the underpass yesterday (May 9).

Mr Wongsakorn’s claim follows all three pumps in the underpass failing following a heavy downpour about 2am Monday morning leaving the underpass flooded.

The tunnel was closed for safety Monday morning ‒ after a seven-car pileup. The tunnel remained closed throughout Monday night and most of Tuesday as ensuing works to clear the floodwaters continued, together causing major traffic disruptions along the busy bypass road.

Of note, the pump-system failure came just hours after Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha visited Phuket to attend a campaign rally at Saphan Hin.

“This tunnel has been open for almost 10 years, but has never had major maintenance, and now water inside the tunnel from heavy rain resulted in the electricity in the tunnel having to be  turned off,” Mr Wongsakorn said, according to a report by the Phuket Info Center.

The Darasamut Underpass actually fully opened on Apr 7, 2015. The project, measuring 820 metres length in total, with the tunnel itself measuring about 128m, cost just over B600 million to build and took just over two years to complete.

“The system inside the tunnel may have reached its lifespan. It must be maintained. The Highways Office  has been operating at full capacity as it is now, but it still lacks the budget to keep the [tunnel equipment] in operation,” Mr Wongsakorn said.

“As I understand it, in the past several years there has not been any major repairs at all,” he continued.

“Personally, I will try to coordinate with the relevant agencies. In order to request for budget allocation to repair and maintain the tunnel,” Mr Wongsakorn added.

Mr Wongsakorn’s comments came late yesterday afternoon after Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation (PPAO) President Rewat Areerob ordered the Phuket provincial branch of teh Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM-Phuket) to provide a pump to help clear the standing floodwaters.

The underpass was declared reopened to traffic in both directions just before midday yesterday, but the southbound lane through the tunnel was closed again after the third pump failed.

The southbound lane remained closed while the DDPM pump was installed.

Of note, DDPM-Phuket Chief Udomporn Kan has yet to comment on any assistance provided by DDPM-Phuket.

Likewise, Yuttana Pitak, Director of Phuket Highways Office, which is responsible for maintaining the underpass safety equipment, has also yet to make any public comment on the underpass’s pump system failure.

After the DDPM pump was installed, the southbound lane through the underpass reopened again at about 8:30pm last night.

However, the southbound lane was closed again at 9:40am today while more repairs continued, and reopened again at about 12:20pm.

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

* (Not Hotmail/Outlook)

megamind | 11 May 2023 - 18:59:39

Somnamnà LOL

JohnC | 11 May 2023 - 09:12:32

Here is that phrase again. PREVENTATIVE MAINTENANCE. Thailand, you should try it some time, it really does work!

Fascinated | 10 May 2023 - 19:27:43

Follow the money- someone did well out of this. 


Have a news tip-off? Click here


Phuket community
Further crackdown on illegal foreigners underway

"White Accommodation Scheme"?? I wonder how far I'd get trying to launch a Black or B...(Read More)

Phuket cannabis businesses call for support

Absolutely it was never approved for recreational usage, but that provision got bent over backwar...(Read More)

Phuket Opinion: Facing down the taxi cartels

K Somchart is a brave man.. if he can change this then chapeaux.... just hope he will stay safe an...(Read More)

Phuket cannabis businesses call for support

stop issuing licences, stop online sell ( you can buy it anywhere online and could well be school k...(Read More)

Phuket Opinion: Facing down the taxi cartels

Perhaps the most widely held sentiment in Thailand is associated with the near universal disgust peo...(Read More)

Russian tourist drowns at Patong Beach

Same same, different year...some things will never change. Dangerous beaches, clueless visitors, and...(Read More)

Lao activist’s killing in Isan raises questions

Thailand's military regime is, and has always been incapable of conducting a "credible and ...(Read More)

Prayut allays fears over transfer of power

Now, MFP and Pheu Thai huddle/row over House Speaker job. In a democratic coalition they should givi...(Read More)

Russian tourist drowns at Patong Beach

Seen the weather predictions, the Life Guards should have been already patrolling that time. Not a s...(Read More)

Further crackdown on illegal foreigners underway

Raise Phuket image as safe/desirable(?) destination, better start sanation of PLTO/taxi cartels. The...(Read More)