The announcement came yesterday (July 5) after Mr Udormporn said the more than 30 mild earthquakes had been recently reported occurring off the Nicobar Islands.
As of yesterday, that number stood at 17 mild underwater earthquakes ranging from 4.1 to 5.1 in magnitude in the 24 hours from Monday to Tuesday.
The underwater earthquakes, reported by the non-government Phuket Earthquake Monitoring and Surveillance Center, which also goes by the name ‘Phuket SOS’ (see here), have struck mainly in the area 400-550km northwest of Phuket, with many of the earthquakes occurring at a relatively shallow depth of 10km.
The spate of earthquakes in the region have raised concerns among local residents of an impending tsunami, Mr Udomporn noted.
“We are ready to deal with such incidents. We have 19 warning towers around the island, which we test by playing the national anthem at 8am every Wednesday,” he said.
“In the event of an incident, we will be able to send warning signals to those who live in coastal areas as well, with announcements in five languages, including Thai, English, Chinese, Russian,” he added.
“We also have designated escape routes [from tsunami danger zones] which are checked regularly. We have recently had the escape route signs upgraded so they point people towards safety points in various areas around the island,” Mr Udomporn said.
“On July 20, there will be a tsunami evacuation drill in Thalang so relevant agencies can prepare and be ready to respond in such a situation,” he said.
Mr Udomporn yesterday also took the opportunity to dismiss misleading reports online that the recent swamping of the coastal road at Sai Kaew was the result of a tsunami.
“Do not worry, follow the information," he said. “It was the sea conditions at Sai Kaew Beach [that caused the road flooding]. It’s not about earthquakes!”
Mr Udomporn urged all people to closely follow reports on all public safety matters, including the Nicobar earthquakes and the weather.