The governmental agency research ship SEAFDEC left the Phuket Deep Sea Port on Nov 19 on a two-week mission to deploy the two buoys with a team of 30 experts from Thailand’s Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) on board.
The ship returned to Phuket on Saturday (Nov 28), confirmed Suwat Pabpeung, Chief of the National Disaster Warning Centre (NDWC) Operations Division.
“The deployment went according to plan,” he said.
The buoy designated Station 23401 was deployed at its assigned location some 600 nautical miles west of Phuket in the multinational ‘Bay of Bengal array’ and began providing real-time data at 7:15pm on Nov 24, Mr Suwat said.
The second buoy, designated Station 23461, was installed at its proper location in the Andaman Sea, some 280km northwest of Phuket, and came online at 7:15pm last Friday (Nov 27), he added.
The NDWC and the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) will continue to monitor the two buoys and perform regular checks on their performance.
The next scheduled full inspection of the two buoys will be in two years, he added.
As announced when the SEAFDEC ship departed Phuket, all crew and officers on board have now been placed in 14-day quarantine as a precaution.
“All officials appear to be healthy, but they still must serve 14 days quarantine, which they began on Sunday [Nov 29],” Mr Suwat said.