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Dinner by candlelight in Phuket City tonight. Many restaurants were forced to close and did not reopen when the power resumed, losing a night's takings

UPDATE Phuket, 14 Southern Provinces of Thailand Plunged into Darkness by Massive Power Failure

Tuesday, May 21, 2013
UPDATE

POWER was being restored intermittently across Phuket from around 8pm. Initial reports say a cable fault caused the massive blackout. Readers said areas of Phuket's south and Thailand's south remained in darkness. Phuket radio station 91.5 FM managed to return to the air and was making community service announcements.
Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand official Thatri Rewcharoen says the blackout was triggered by the failure of the main high voltage transmission line connecting the south to the central region, AP reported. He said power was restored in some areas within about an hour, but it was expected to take at least three hours for a full recovery. Late tonight, Samui and Phangan islands were still in darkness.

Original Report

PHUKET: The holiday island of Phuket and all of Thailand's 13 other southern provinces were plunged into total darkness by a widespread power failure tonight.

The electricity failed about 7pm, causing chaos in parts of Phuket and concerns about the safety of people in darkened streets.

Thousands of tourists in resorts on Phuket and all over the region would have suddenly found themselves in blackness.

The Director of Phuket's Provincial Power Authority, Somchai Kerpert, said there was no explanation but the power failure was general across Thailand's entire south.

Hospitals are believed to all have auxillary power but restaurants, retail outlets and many other premises faced the prospect of refrigerators failing and other malfunctions.

Ambulances are expected to be called out as the blackout continues, with roads unlit.

In Phuket City, residents turned out onto the streets and sat waiting for light to return. Some turned on the lights of their cars for comfort - a short-term solution.

At Bangkok Hospital Phuket in Phuket City, the half-darkened hospital continued to operate - but a female shop assistant was locked in a convenience store by an automatic door that would not operate.

In Patong - central nightlife hub for Phuket's tourists - nightclub manager Prab Keesin said he was concerned for the safety of people caught out by the power failure.

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Khon Kaen too for about 15 minutes

Posted by larry on May 21, 2013 19:42

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(moderated)

Posted by stu on May 21, 2013 19:52

Editor Comment:

The only thing that needs explaining stu is that you fail to understand how mobile telephones work. We collect numbers. When there's a crisis, we start dialling people who know what they are talking about. You are never going to be on the list. And you won't be posted here again.

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No chaos in Kamala- with the traffic lights out vehicles just increased their speed- traffic flowing very 'smoothly'! Nothing like sticking on the four way flashers and speeding through the junctions- I guess I missed that one in the Highway Code.

Posted by Mister Ree on May 21, 2013 20:01

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I really enjoyed it! I rode up the hill just to have a look at how many lights were off. It is a great feeling when it happens (except the people who are injured or have problems as a result). It certainly makes people appreciate electricity much more, at least for a few minutes. Locals at the shop near me cheered when the power was finally turned back on! I wonder how many people had facebook/internet withdrawals! 555+

Posted by Matt on May 21, 2013 20:04

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Also, It is interesting that a problem could shit down the power for so much of Thailand! I wonder where the electricity is generated for the south and what the specifics of the 'failure' were!

Posted by Matt on May 21, 2013 20:05

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I phoned a friend in Kamala at approx 20.00 and it seems electrical power has been restored

Posted by reader on May 21, 2013 20:12

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Phuket Wan first to break the news.

That is one gigantic power failure, even in the global scheme of things. Must be several million people in the south. If this drags on for days, the cost to the economy will be in the billions. I guess there's no Tea Money in maintaining basic infrastructure.

Posted by ThaiMike on May 21, 2013 20:43

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Central had all its power back about 8pm but where I live the power is still out.

Posted by tbs on May 21, 2013 20:51

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Still no power i naiharn area

Posted by hakan on May 21, 2013 21:21

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Power was restored to Thalang district around 8pm

Posted by agogohome on May 21, 2013 21:22

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Still no power in Rawai. Any updates?

Posted by Timless on May 21, 2013 21:27

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i do like a good power cut at night it reminds me when i was a kid .. went out to buy candles .. took them home and lit the house .. then the power came back on .. typical .. good fun though

Posted by sean on May 21, 2013 21:47

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Power just returned in Muang Karon 8:56

Posted by Chris on May 21, 2013 21:53

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Again and again in Phang Nga, independently from this bigger case. Never get any explanations, unfortunatly no options to go to.

Posted by Resident on May 21, 2013 21:59

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As of 22.35 only some street lights powered in Chalong area. Can't see any shops or houses having electricity, including mine.

Posted by ThaiMike on May 21, 2013 22:25

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STILL no relief in Rawai - pleeeease I need aircon!

Posted by Timless on May 21, 2013 22:36

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hey sean you cudnt afford candles in the old days lol

Posted by paul on May 21, 2013 22:43

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Power came on to parts of Kata around 1030pm. Just came back on in Rawai. 1045pm

Posted by NomadJoe on May 21, 2013 22:44

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What's the Thai for "Dual Redundancy"?

Posted by Buster on May 22, 2013 00:04

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Thank you Phuketwan for supporting our efforts at 91.5, we were back LIVE at 19:50 and continued with community service announcements through to 10pm on air and via our social network channels.

Posted by Byron on May 22, 2013 01:19

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Lights restored @ 10.10 Pm on Ko Lanta , doesn t change a lot, we are just so in darkness and quietness anyway here ! Phuket...send us a few fellows to restore our bank accounts flows. Governor faster action now please for Ko Lanta development ..(rule n/1 " no long chairs on the public beaches" and then...rule n/2 (?) come on action please ! ).

Posted by serge on May 22, 2013 07:21

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I sat in the dark & called my Mum in the UK. Half-hour later she was still yakking so told her I was forced to go out to the pub 'cos of the power failure

Posted by Anonymous on May 22, 2013 11:02

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Pretty awesome Play Of The Day by Phuketwan. Greatest news team for wider Phuket (or as the American embassy guy would say: some online tourism magazine. Guess he checked here to know what's going on, just trace your IP log for fun, ED).

Posted by Lena on May 22, 2013 18:30


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