The warning was posted on the International Surf Lifesaving Association (ISLA) South East Asia Facebook page. (Click here.)
The warning comes as the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) yesterday issued a surf warning for the entire Andaman coast, including Phuket, Phang, Nga, Krabi, Trang and Satun, for Aug 23-27. (See main image above.)
“The surf danger that has been entrenched in Phuket for the last several weeks is forecast to continue. There may, however, be periods of sunshine and lighter winds that will draw visitors to the beaches,” ISLA explained in its warning today (Aug 24).
Accordingly, the following warnings issued by the ISLA remain in effect for the next 48 to 72 hours:
- High Surf
- Severe Channelised Rip Currents
- Flash Rip Currents
- Dangerous Beach Debris
“Eighty percent of Phuket’s beach drownings are rip current related, and most of these occur under sunny skies,” explained the warning.
“Dangerous debris such as sharp stakes, broken concrete with rebar protruding, broken glass, etc. are present on the sand and in the water at many west coast beaches, especially Surin. Walkers and swimmers are advised to watch where they swim and step while walking.”
Of critical note is that during periods of severe rip current activity, even swimmers in waist-deep water can be overwhelmed by waves and pulled out to sea, ISLA cautioned.
“Beach visitors should only swim or wade in safe swimming areas marked by red and yellow flags.
“Otherwise, beachgoers should stay out of the water completely, especially in areas marked by red flags,” the warning urged.