Samples were collected from about 100m downstream from the Patong Municipality wastewater treatment plant and at several points along the canal to where the waterway empties into Patong Bay at the southern end of the beach.
Samples were also collected from along the Patong beachfront, said environmental officer Khanchit Soontrakorn.
“We especially inspected the water released by the Patong wastewater treatment plant,” Mr Khanchit told The Phuket News.
“We know that Patong Municipality has its own individual company hired to test water quality of the water it releases, but we want to know the volume of nutrients that is in the water that is released by the plant, which could which affect plankton in bay,” he said.
However, Mr Khanchit said that his officers will have to wait 10 days for the water-quality test results.
“Then we can figure out what caused the water at Patong Beach to change colour and how to solve the problem,” he added.
“The Patong Municipality wastewater treatment plant receives wastewater from an area covering about 12.4 square kilometres – which is about 80 per cent of the whole Patong area,” Mr Khanchit explained.
“We know that Patong Municipality is working on expanding its wastewater treatment coverage to include the remaining 20% of the Patong area... and we know they are looking at doing this soon... but at this stage that is all we know.” he said.
The samples collected today fly in the face of officials on Saturday (Apr 16) assuring that wastewater released by the Patong Municipality plant did not contribute to the problem of the Patong beachfront water turning brown. (See story here.)
The inspection of the Patong Municipality wastewater treatment plant on Saturday, led by Phuket Vice Governor Khajornkiet Rakpanichmanee, followed aerial footage of brown water in Patong bay and the canal going viral on a local community Facebook page. (See here.)