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Phuket Governor warns of possible flash floods, ongoing high winds

PHUKET: Phuket Governor Norraphat Plodthong has today (June 6) issued a warning of the possibility of flash floods and continuous high winds as a strong southwestern monsoon system crosses the Andaman Coast.

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The Phuket News

Tuesday 6 June 2017, 05:28PM

High winds have already brought down trees lining the airport runway road today after the monsoon system hit the island mid-afternoon.

The warning also comes following a meeting held yesterday (June 5) where Gov Norraphat urged the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM), rescue workers and residents to be on alert for floods and strong winds, and urged people to pay attention to forthcoming weather forecasts.

Speaking at yesterday’s meeting, Gov Norraphat said, “The Phuket Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation were informed today that in the coming days a southwestern monsoon will cover the Andaman region and that provinces to be affected include Ranong, Phang Nga, Phuket, Trang, and Satun.

“People should beware of severe weather conditions and possible flash floods. All vehicles should proceed with caution, and as wave heights are expected to be between two-to-three metres, and higher within storm systems, small boats are advised to stay ashore.

“We have ordered district and local administration offices to notify residents and tourists of the weather warning. Officials are ready for any situations for 24 hours,” he added.

In addition, Director of the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Center 18, Mr Chatchawan Betjasiriwong, told The Phuket News today (June 6), “During our meeting yesterday Gov Norraphat asked us to have equipment and staff ready and available 24 hours in case of any floods.

“The two main high-risk areas are Thepkrasattri Rd in front of Thai Watsadu and Thepkrasattri Rd in front of the main Super Cheap store where the soil makes them highly susceptible to floods.

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“The first indicator of flood danger is if the rain continues non-stop for three days. Any areas which have three days of rain must be wary. Also, observe the colour of the water on the ground – if it becomes an orange or red colour, then there is a possibility of floods and people may have to move to higher ground,” Mr Chatchawan said.

Meanwhile, the Thai Royal Navy Chief of Staff together with the Chief of the DDPM today visited Phuket and Phang Nga to check on the DDPM’s preparation for the beginning of the monsoon season along the Andaman coast.

“The monsoon can cause heavy rain and make the wind and waves stronger, which can lead to disasters such as floods and landslides. Therefore, it is important to prepare so that we can cope with these kind of natural disasters,” a Royal Thai Third Naval Area Command official explained.

In addition, the Royal Thai Third Naval Area Command officia said, “In Phuket our checks consisted of making sure fire trucks, inflatable boats, ambulances and other rescue equipment are in good condition and ready for use.

“With have also discussed with relevant agencies what we have been found to be successful and unsuccessful in terms of their preparedness and have advised them of what needs to be improved in way of their preparations,” he said.

“While in Phang Nga the same checks for readiness were carried out, but here we also conducted a demonstration rescue drill showing how to save people from drowning,” he added.



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