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Crowds throng Phuket airport as the storm forces delays, diversions

Savage Phuket Storm Wreaks Havoc

Saturday, November 23, 2013
UPDATING All Day, Every Day

NORMAL flight arrivals to Phuket resumed at 2.40pm, a spokesperson said. There was a backlog for departures.

Original Report

PHUKET: Savage monsoon weather smashed Phuket today, wrecking yachts, longtails and other vessels, triggering landslips and causing chaos on roads and diversions in the air.

At the height of the hammering, four aircraft due to land at Phuket International Airport were diverted. Transferred flights included TG201 to Bangkok, PG271 to Krabi, MI752 to Langkawi and 3K533 to Penang.

Takeoffs were delayed and airport officials were hard-pressed to restore normal scheduling.

Elsewhere, Marine Police were desperately trying to rescue people who may have been on the boats being smashed all around the west and east coasts of Phuket.

At least four yachts being readied for next week's King's Cup Regatta were among the damaged vessels.

Traffic on Phuket was thrown into chaos, with flooding all over the island. Authorities were hoping that the bad weather is over and recovery can begin.

''Many yachts have been wrecked at Ao Yon [between Cape Panwa and Chalong, on Phuket's east coast]. The devastation is widespread,'' one Marine Police officer said. ''The picture is being repeated at other places, too.''

The unusually damaging storm continued off Phi Phi, where a ferry, a dive boat and about two dozen speedboats and longtails were sunk or smashed as the shock storm swept in. Two fishermen and their trawler were missing this afternoon.

Ashore, a landslip took away a substantial part of a road behind the bypass road's Outlook shopping mall.

Severe weather on and around Phuket is difficult to predict accurately and boat ''captains'' sometimes put to sea despite warnings.

Phuket and Phi Phi were not the only destinations being tormented by bad weather. Rail links to the southern provinces from Bangkok were shut down last night as floods swept the provinces of Nakhon Si Thammarat, Surat Thani and Trang.

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It appears the outcome from that low pressure cell has now formed a significant Tropical Cyclone which is moving away from Phuket in the direction of the Andaman Islands, see details at link: http://www.usno.navy.mil/JTWC/
Many had obviously underestimated the initial impact of the tropical depression leaving insurance assessors with lots of work to follow up on Monday

Posted by Man of Steel on November 23, 2013 16:34


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