Storms cancel ferry service for Koh Samui, Pha Ngan, and Tao
While Surat Thani has been gearing up for a huge holiday weekend, the weather has other plans. Scattered storms with extremely high winds have disrupted power as well as ferry schedules, with Surat Thani Governor Wichawut Jinto ordering the cancellation of all ferry services today until at least tomorrow, including to the popular tourist islands of Koh Samui, Koh Pha Ngan, and Koh Tao.
Thousands of people have been making their way to the islands for the Buddha Day holidays that created a 5-day weekend, as while as the massive Full Moon Party on Haad Rin Beach in Koh Pha Ngan on Friday. But many have been delayed or halted due to the cancelled ferries and the rough ocean waters.
The governor ordered all ships not to leave districts located on the coast of the Gulf of Thailand, including ferries. Boats running between the mainland at Surat Thani and Chumphon and the island of Koh Samui, Koh Pha Ngan, and Koh Tao all cancelled their planned travels. The decision was made after the Meteorological Department put out an advisory warning of storms and rough waters for the Gulf of Thailand.
Cancellation of all fairies was made as a safety precaution to avoid an incident at sea during a high-traffic time just days after a boat capsized in a storm in Krabi. Two years ago, similar rough weather caused a catastrophe when a Raja Ferry capsized off the coast of Koh Samui and two people lost their life.
Weather officials say that they expect heavy storms on the waters until Thursday, with waves up to 3 metres high. Surat Thani is not alone, as many parts of the country including Bangkok are expected to be pelted with rain for the next two days until Thursday.
Boat cancellations come at a rough time as people struggle to make their way in already crowded boats to Koh Pga Ngan for this month’s Full Moon Party, predicted to be the biggest of the nine that have come since reopening after the Covid-19 pandemic. Hotels are being inundated with requests to delay or cancel bookings from people who are unable to make it to the island without ferry service.
Meanwhile, power outages may occur on Koh Samui where a loud power box explosion was heard just minutes ago in Chaweng with powerful winds knocking branches off of palm trees and blowing debris around.
Customers are being told that ferry service should begin at 5am Tuesday, with many determined to get on the boats as soon as it’s safe to enjoy the long holiday weekend.
SOURCE: The Phuket News
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