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The centre of the quake off Phuket was close to Phi Phi

Earthquake Shakes Phuket Awake

Wednesday, May 6, 2015
UPDATING All Day, Every Day

NO DAMAGE was reported from today's earthquake centred near Phuket, or an aftershock of magnitude 3.2 that followed at 12.25pm, authorities said.

Original Report

PHUKET: The holiday island of Phuket was struck by an earthquake at 4.18am today. Seismologists in Bangkok confirmed there had been a tremor of magnitude 4.6.

People were awoken by the movement. Social media and the telephone system quickly became alive with comments by people who left their beds because of the shaking.

Seismologists said the quake had its epicentre south Koh Yao, on Phuket's east coast, at 7.88 longitude latitude 98.51, at a depth of five kilometres.

The earthquake, originally deemed to be of magnitude 4.1, was later upgraded to 4.6.

Phuket is in an earthquake-prone zone. On March 25, a 3.8 shake occurred at 5.32am.

That earthquake was located at 7.89 longitude latitude 98.52, eight kilometres east of Phuket City, reported. It occurred at a depth of 23 kilometres.

On February 20 a magnitude 4.0 earthquake was felt on Phuket and other offshore islands in Thailand's popular Andaman Coast holiday region.

The quake was also felt in Phang Nga, the holiday province north of Phuket. Later reports said it was also felt in Krabi, another Andaman holiday province.

On May 5, 2014, a 6.1 magnitude earthquake rocked Chiang Rai province, leading to mass evacuations, huge cracks in roadways and the wrecking of many buildings, including temples. Comments

Phuket, Thailand Several seconds of rumbling around 4:20am, no damage seen.

Kathu, Thailand Sounded like a heavy helicopter went over, people woke up in the building to see what was going on.

Phuket, Thailand At the JW Marriott and felt the whole room move!

Koh Yao yai House was checked during several seconds but no damage

Patong No damage, just shake 2 seconds. First I thought it was a big truck

Rawai, Phuket Woke my girlfriend up, lasted at least 4 seconds

Phuket Slight shaking as if a freight train was passing . No falling objects . Woke me up .

Krabi Shook the house - good wake up call

cape panwa At the 2nd flr of the hotel and Woke up to a loud rumbling sound.

Kata Beach, Phuket Felt a shuttering that lasted about 5 seconds. Dogs in the area all started barking

Klong nin I'm thought it was crazy thunder but now read the report of earthquake so not sure?

Karon I felt a shake and woke up, then there was nothing, i thought it was just my wife that maybe moved next to me.

Bangtao Beach, Phuket I was woken by shaking (I now know at about 4.20) and a rumbling noise. I immediately thought it an earthquake, but quickly dismissed it as thunder and my husband moving next to me. No apparent damage to the house


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Around 4:20 felt very strong EQ tremor in Western Phang Nga, just 1 or may be 2 impulses - it felt as I am falling out of bed - my first ideas was that it is robbery and need to mobilize to fight .
There was quite a noise as furniture etc. on a balcony have been moving too.

TMD website on local EQs was silent on the event:
Local Thais said - Oh, if there is tsunami we will be warned - hm...

Tried to call TMD EQ Hotline - first was Coldline no answer, 2nd finally responded and pronounced smth. like Arg, yes, Phuket! - and obviously switched to other lines that were ringing , so no info on magnitude

Posted by Sue on May 6, 2015 04:42


What i should to do? I'm scary

Posted by Onpono on May 6, 2015 05:23


Woke up to the shake this morning, at first thought it was a strong wind rocking my bungalow. half hour later people walking up to the hills worried about Tsunami. I must congratulate the Phuketwan on being on the ball and reporting information quickly and before any other major news channel.Wonder when other news outlets on Phuket will wake up and finally get around to reporting the news to it's community.

Posted by PP Farang on May 6, 2015 08:06

Editor Comment:

Eventually, PP Farang, eventually.


I am happy that you had an earth moving experience rather than having to fight off an unwelcome invader.

Posted by Manowar on May 6, 2015 08:42



actually only now I realized that there was a kind of rumbling sound wave from the EQ itself - that happens when you're too close to epicenter - that given an impression together with a gravitation impulse that someone is very very forcefully slamming through the door(or perhaps through wall) , and giving a dinging sound of moving furniture on a balcony, thus the very first impression was that "these a**holes" hidden there, and the next thought was using which tool to kick the sXit out of them.

PhuketWan admittedly, and again, was mercury fast to inform us about what is going on!
while I was typing a text of the entry, the headline of the article, has changed from magnitude unknown to magnitude 4 , based on the info at that moment.

Posted by Sue on May 6, 2015 10:16


I felt it this morning, very well, i have to say,but it was nothing compared to some drivers on the road in Phuket. These "phenomenons" are much more scarier.

Posted by Carl on May 6, 2015 10:22


12:25 today there was again the EQ at the exactly same spot as in the night, but only 3.2 strong.

I felt nothing in Khao Lak.

Posted by Sue on May 6, 2015 13:14


no wonder that 12:25 3.2 magnitude EQ wasn't felt:
it is by 1.6 Richer magnitude units weaker than night even, and Richter scale is a decimal logarithmic scale, so shaking amplitude was smaller by decimal exponent function of 1.6 i.e.39.83 tines smaller , but energy release is calculated by appr. factor of 3.1 to a shaking amplitude change, so energy released was 123 times smaller than in the night - sunbed has been shaked with 123 times weaker force than my night bed .

Posted by Sue on May 6, 2015 13:28


Sue, just how many tools can you use to kick with besides your left or right kicking tool?

I believe Alan was closer to the epicentre and wanted to publish it on line to prewarn you of the impending experience coming your way.

Posted by Manowar on May 6, 2015 14:27


A mag 3.2 is equal to the the energy released from about 950 kg of TNT, whereas a mag 4.6 is equal to the energy released from about 120 metric tonnes. Your 123 times the energy is fairly accurate and I am therefore impressed........
with the accuracy and calibration of your bed shaking scales.

Posted by Manowar on May 6, 2015 14:42



when experiencing even slight EQ while in Phuklet (small Phuket), Phuket (greater Phuket) or vicinity, to determine whether continue to sleep or to run, the most important, in my opinion, is to determine where the epicentre located:

Khlong Marui fault that goes through Koh Yao islands group, that manifested itself today, and also recently, in general is relatively harmless, as what it normally will produce an EQ if magnitude 3-4. However, arrival of return period for a single 6-7 mags EQ is riping, as the last one was appr.2000 yrs ago, and the previous appr.4000 yrs ago.
The same is about Ranong fault.
See Chula's university overview on it:

However it all fades in comparison with Indo-Australian/Indian plates collision which subduction zone starts North of Sumatra and goes South along its Western coast - it was well described many times in details in media, so it will continuously, probably many times per year, remind about itself, and is the biggest source of potential Phuket EQ/tsunami worries and troubles.

When this night TMD officer on duty barked at me, "Phuket",without even giving the EQ magnitude, then I was already relieved knowing that it was Khlong Marui fault that called us in the night, not Sunda Trench or Great Sumatran fault.

I think I was rolling on a bed in a sleep, and EQ strike's force's vector coincided with a rolling over direction, namely off Phuket - that probably generated Super-Roll and I find myself on the floor :D
The tool to crash sculls of "criminals on balcony", of course was a chair - my first impulse was to slam chair over their fxxxxg heads - those who slammed through the door, making noise as if truck arrived in a room, kicked me off the bad, and then took a refuge at balcony!

I think all kids in EQ prone areas, should learn Calculus up to logarithmic and exponent functions also within mandatory classes, even if they will not go for a secondary education, otherwise they will not be able to understand well the nature around them!
Otherwise, how they would calculate an EQ energy release properly?

One thing I am a bit puzzled about, which physical parameter better corresponds with a subjective experience from EQ, like in question - released energy, a particular force generated by it, rate of acceleration, or momentum?

But PhuketWan was extremely fast in putting the news in distribution!
It could well be that when the 1st strike arrived to Phang Nga , it was already published. My fault, I didn't check it on time!

Posted by Sue on May 6, 2015 23:52


this night at 00.31 another trembling for 1-2 seconds at Yamu

Posted by guest on May 7, 2015 00:34


Another shake has just hit Cherngtalay at approx 12.50am Thurs morn!! Felt similar size to the 4.18am one. Starting to worry as that is 3 in 24hrs!

Posted by Mickey on May 7, 2015 01:03

Editor Comment:

It's quite a grumble.


Your recent comments appear to be founded on shakey grounds however in relation to your question of released energy verses shaking the following may help.
In order to compare different forces from unrelated events, the easiest way is to use the unit of energy ( joule). An explosion, an EQ, a car crashing into a wall or a wave of certain height and velocity or a quantity of known explosive each has either potential energy or has by the event released this energy.
All energy released and by whatever means is eventually converted to heat.
One gram of TNT releases approx 4.2 kJ of energy. Switching on a 60 watt light for 70 seconds also requires 4.2 kJ of energy and after 70 seconds has produced 4.2 kJ of heat. 4 typical match heads also releases 4.2 kJ of energy and converts this to heat.
4.2kJ of energy if transferred fully to 1 litre of water will raise the temperature approximately 1 deg C as the specific the capacity of water is 4.19 kJ per kg per deg C.
Energy released from any source is omitted equally in all directions unless the release is shaped to concentrate the release in a certain direction. Energy can also be released, while being stored, to concentrate the release in a more volatile manner so the eventual release has a higher velocity.
An example would be a litre of petrol poured on the ground, which when lit, would flash and then burn. The same petrol if ignited within an enclosed container, will start to burn, increase the pressure and then explode. This explosion will cause a high velocity shock wave which will be felt by those close and only heard by anyone say 100 m away.
Most EQ's result from a build up of energy via 2 surfaces being forced against each other. When the materials can no longer withstand this force, the material fractures causing a sudden movement and release of the original compressive forces. Energy is stored in the form of compression of the material and the release causes the material to expand, further forcing the contact surfaces together. At some point, insufficient energy is available to continue this movement and the contact point comes to an abrupt stop. This abrupt stop causes an impact shock wave though the ground. This is what we feel from an EQ.
The size of the EQ at epicentre determines the magnitude of the shock wave and the depth, rock conditions and velocity of the energy released determine the shaking frequency that is felt on the surface. As energy is dissipated with distance by conversion to heat, the shock wave reduces.
Calculating the epicentre is approximately possible via measurement at any two separate points but more accurately measured using multiply positions once the readings taken at all points have been recalculated for energy loss.
This is why an initial size of EQ will be provided from quick calculations using raw data and then later confirm of an exact size.
A shock wave is a sudden horizontal (generally) acceleration of the ground in one direction and then return back to the original position. A further shock wave continues this movement and the first shock wave is not necessarily the largest but this rocking occurs until either no more shock waves exist or they have insufficient energy to reach the position being measured or felt.
As you well know by now, the shock wave is quiet violet with definite horizontal movement with some uplifting and very directional.

Posted by Manowar on May 7, 2015 19:05

Saturday November 28, 2020
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


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