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Floods in Phuket City today bring a warning of more rain to come

Phuket Warning to Small Boats Follows Stormy Weather, Flooding

Sunday, September 8, 2013
PHUKET: Bad weather should keep small boats at anchor off Phuket for the next 48 hours, Mata Aremean, Director of the the Phuket-based Southern Meteorological Centre (West Coast), warned today.

He was speaking after sudden downpours dumped large amounts of water on Phuket City and Patong, causing flash flooding.

Gusts of up to 60kph would herald more storms, he said: ''September can be the worst month of the year for difficult weather.''

Storms are also expected all week along the Andaman coast in Phang Nga, Krabi and Ranong. About 50mm of rain dumped on Phuket City overnight, he said.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Again no warning on the TMD website, a slight breeze at the moment and the forecast for today and the coming days is quite reasonable; strong winds in the forecast of none of the weather sites, including TMD.

Posted by stevenl on September 8, 2013 10:54


Not need much of "difficult weather" to get flooding when the water have no place to go anymore!

Posted by Harald on September 8, 2013 14:48


Aren't stormy weather warnings supposed to come before the stormy weather?

Posted by nomadjoe on September 8, 2013 20:18


@Stevenl - The TMD website is terrible and really poorly maintained regarding weather alerts. I would never use them for weather forecasting .

Posted by Ciaran on September 9, 2013 11:02


"Aren't stormy weather warnings supposed to come before the stormy weather?"

They do, no stormy weather now but Wednesday the wind will pick up. So this warning comes 4 days in advance :)

Posted by stevenl on September 9, 2013 11:17


"The TMD website is terrible and really poorly maintained regarding weather alerts. I would never use them for weather forecasting ."
Yes, I know and agree, but according to the ED it is the only source of weather information that can be used since it is the official one.

Posted by stevenl on September 9, 2013 11:40

Editor Comment:

We've never used the TMD site. Never. I don't know where you get your information, but best not to make stuff up.


I took Steven's advice a long time ago and use Wind Guru which I expect is his source of information.

Posted by Alan on September 9, 2013 14:08


"We've never used the TMD site. Never. I don't know where you get your information, but best not to make stuff up."
According to PhuketWan "There is only one official meteorological source for us and only one responsible course of action for us to take", see here
So not the website, but you claim TMD to be the one official source for you. I would think journalism is about the facts, not blindly sticking to the one source that time and time again is wrong.

Posted by stevenl on September 9, 2013 16:46

Editor Comment:

You've lost the plot. The only official source for us is the one we quote in that article and in other articles - the Phuket-based Southern Meteorological Centre (West Coast). We have never used the TMD website. You are wasting my time and other readers' time.


Yes, that is part of the TMD.

Posted by stevenl on September 9, 2013 17:19

Editor Comment:

Of course it is, but it's not the TMD website you've been making a song and dance about and putting down consistently.


Sorry Ed but you are wrong and Stevenl is correct. The "Phuket-based Southern Meteorological Centre (West Coast)" is a subsidiary web page ( of the main TMD website ( There is a separate page for every region in Thailand with further pages for destinations within that region. Each destination's forecast is based on the weather station(s) for that destination. Phuket has two, Phuket, based in the south, and Phuket Airport for the north. It is reasonable to expect that the National Meteorological Department's website should carry warnings on both its Home Page and on the pages of individual destinations given the variable nature of the country's weather. In fact it does but the latest Warning on the page for Phuket based web page you refer to is dated August 15th 2013 and refers to Tropical Cyclone "Utor".

Posted by Alan on September 9, 2013 18:25

Editor Comment:

I'm not wrong, Alan, you are.

We don't use the web pages of the TMD. We never have and we probably never will. We deal direct with their officials over the telephone!

I have no interest in you or Stevenl making stuff up. As I said, this is a total waste of time. Your opinion on the weather is also of no value.


Forgive me for assuming that an On-line newspaper would actually use On-line resources for its sources of information. Visitors to Thailand and people living abroad, like me, are hardly going to phone up the TMD when they have an international website. Setting aside the means of access the criticism remains that the official Thailand Meteorological website does not carry Severe Weather warnings for residents and visitors to access, which is more important for them than those like me who look at it out of interest or planning our return or when we are over there.
So, apologies for my assumption about your source. The rest of my comments are views about the inadequacies of the TMD website as an importance source of information when there is severe weather forecast. Why could they have not put the same information that you have published above on their website? I can't see anything difficult or controversial about that, can you? I would have thought it is an essential part of essential public information that should be disseminated publicly by whatever means they have at their disposal. Perhaps next time you speak to TMD officials you could point this out.
As far as I can see in my comments I have not expressed any opinion about the weather for you to put any value on.

Posted by Alan on September 9, 2013 19:19

Editor Comment:

Making assumptions is best avoided, Alan. We are going to continue to telephone the local meteorological experts, and we will report what they have to say because we believe the information is useful to our readers. Stevenl can like it or not, or use whatever service he wishes. And no doubt he will continue to make assumptions. Accurately forecasting the weather is difficult everywhere, but particularly so on Phuket.


@ed why is it particularly difficult in Phuket? Do you KNOW THIS? if so how so?

Posted by Paul on September 9, 2013 21:18

Editor Comment:

At this time of the year, Phuket has microstorms capable of sinking boats or - with the help of pilots resisting the temptation to abort landings - crash-landing aircraft. The storms can be seen and felt but are difficult to predict in advance. They are often small, powerful, and destructive.


Ed,I appreciate your comments but the fact that Phuket is susceptible to microstorms, as is my "second home" in Thailand, Khao Lak (which has no weather station at all on which to base reliable forecasts nor a "KhaolakWan" to contact the TMD) is all the more reason IMHO that the TMD provides timely information on its website. It is in both Thai and English and I would suggest has as at least the same if not more visitors/readers as does your eminent newspaper.

Posted by Alan on September 9, 2013 23:38

Editor Comment:

The site is apparently not regarded highly by all readers, Alan, and stevenl is among its detractors.

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