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Bangkok Airways in sole control of flights to and from Samui

Update: Power Returns to Samui After Taking Three Day 'Holiday'

Thursday, December 6, 2012
UPDATE

Tourists and residents are clamoring for better infrastructure to make sure that the international reputation and revenue of Samui and Phangan doesn't suffer again from a disastrous three-day outage that ended Friday morning.

Original Report

PHUKET: High season was being redefined on the Thai holiday islands of Samui and Phangan today as tourists were forced to go without showers because of an extended power failure.

Food was rotting in kitchens without refrigeration and visitors were clamoring to leave the islands as fast as possible.

The power has been out to both international holiday destinations since 9am on Tuesday, when a planned outage turned into an unplanned total power failure.

''It's total chaos,'' said one visitor. ''So much for the holiday of a lifetime.''

Authorities were hoping to ration power today to each of Samui's five geographical zones one by one for a few hours at a time, using an old cable network. A newer cable system is down and out.

Resorts and restaurants reported rotting food, no power to pump water for showers, and skyrocketing fuel prices.

The clamor for people wanting to leave Samui will not bring a response. Samui Airport is a private airport, run by Bangkok Airways.

Because it's high season, with about 3000 arrivals and departures a day, all time slots at Samui airport are taken.

Resort managements fear news of the unreliability of power supplies is likely to affect the islands' prospects for tourism.

The unexpected blackout occurred at midday on Tuesday. Electricity authorities had planned an outage from 9am to noon for work on the undersea cable carrying the power supply to Samui and Phangan.

But at midday, when the switch was thrown for power to be restored, the whole network went down and has resisted efforts since to restore it.

A return to full service was predicted for midnight but could not be achieved. Authorities remain ''hopeful'' that full power can be restored soon.

Comments

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No Internet. What a nightmare...

Posted by Lena on December 6, 2012 11:40

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It's a bit more serious than that, Lena.

No streetlights, no aircon but no water for shower either, limited choice of food, no way to contact anyone, difficult or impossible to move around the island because of lack of fuel.

Stuck on an island you can't get off. How would you like to be there with 2 screaming kids with no electricity for over 48hrs now and counting ?

Almost everything is funny as long as it happens to someone else, eh ?

Posted by Andrew on December 6, 2012 14:38

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The island is still beautiful and vacation without internet, without phone and with cold showers in this climate can be a great experience. It's all about atitude and people should not forget that Thailand, no matter you have 5 star hotels or not, is still a developing country with all its specifications.

Posted by Jakub P. on December 6, 2012 14:57

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-Jakup-
Even the cold shower can be impossible, when the water pump is not working.

Posted by Alfred on December 6, 2012 15:06

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@ Jakub P.

There are NO showers, neither cold nor hot. There's no electricity to pump up water. Whatever was in gravity tanks is long gone.

How great an experience is that in a climate like this ?

If you can hack it in such conditions for over 50hrs straight then your attitude is enviable. Judging by the desperation with which people are trying to get off these islands, very few if any share your attitude.

I have friends stuck there - would you like to talk with them ? Aah, sorry, no mobile phone network available. Only a few spotty landlines.

Posted by Andrew on December 6, 2012 15:37

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@Jakub P..developing country f=has nothing to do with it, that statement is just a "cop out", the thing is, Thailand takes foreign technology but refuses to take the intelligence, ie, engineering or intellectual knowledge, required to implement it correctly or to maintain the facility or infrastructure after commissioning. Far too much is done on the cheap.

Posted by dbate_me on December 6, 2012 15:41

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I enjoy pangan even without electricity.
The ocean is still there the weather is great. Thai people are friendly and able to cook on Gas with a headlight. Internet only for a few hours? Not so bad - I'm writing this during the blackout. Calm down people and enjoy the landscape.

Posted by ingo on December 6, 2012 19:26

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Power goes out in our area some times, for our home we have a propane power generator, some of the resorts should plan ahead.

( plan ahead in thailand, maybe not)

Posted by mikey on December 6, 2012 23:29


Wednesday December 7, 2022
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