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Gulf of Thailand battered – heading towards the Andaman Sea, north of Phuket

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Gulf of Thailand battered – heading towards the Andaman Sea, north of Phuket | The Thaiger
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(There is an update from the TMD at the bottom of this article – the tropical depression is weakening as it moves across the landmass from Gulf of Thailand towards the Andman Sea, north of Phuket)

A severe weather warning was issued for the South Eastern Region on Monday, as the Meteorological Department forecast heavy rain for the entire region, while banana farmers in Songkhla were already suffering gale-force winds caused by Typhoon Damrey.

The South Eastern Meteorological Centre warned of a strong low depression over the Southern Region that had caused heavy rain in the entire Eastern coast of the Southern Region and were likely to continue until at least Tuesday. People in the whole of the South Eastern Region were also warned to prepare for possible flash floods.

The Meteorological Department forecast that there would be heavy rain in more than 70 per cent of the South Eastern Region on Tuesday and three-metre waves in the Gulf of Thailand. Sukit Wiriyaphongsukit, a banana farmer in Songkhla’s Na Mom District, said half the banana trees in his farm had been destroyed by the strong winds. His banana crop would be ready for harvesting within a week, he said, but up to 2,000 trees had been uprooted by the storm and he had already asked the authorities for help.

Meanwhile, three districts in Surat Thani have been designated as being at risk for flash floods but provincial Governor Witchawut Jinto said the weather conditions in the province were still normal on Monday. However, the local authorities were already on high alert, he said, and officers would be on hand to help people evacuate in the event of disaster, especially in the at-risk districts of at Kanchanadit, Chaiya and Phrasaeng. Meanwhile, 500 officers from the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry have been dispatched to the province to prepare and cope with possible flash floods. It was also reported on Monday that the ferry services to Koh Samui and Koh Phangan were still operating as usual despite the rough seas.

UPDATE FROM THE TMD…

At 4.00 p.m. today (6 Nov 17), the tropical depression is due 250km east of Nakhon Si Thammarat or latitude 8.0 degree North, longitude 102.0 degree East. With sustained winds of 55 km/hr, the storm is moving west-northwest slowly to make landfall over Surat Thani by tomorrow (7 November) before moving out to the Andaman Sea. Widespread rain will be likely with gusty winds and torrential downpours much of the areas. Residents in the areas should beware of severe condition and possible flash flood.

Affected areas are as following:

6-8 November: Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon, Surat Thani, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Phatthalung, Songkhla, Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat.

7-9 November: Ranong, Phangnga, Phuket, Krabi, Trang and Satun.

STORY: The Nation

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Koh Samui

23 Koh Samui hotels seek alternative state quarantine certification

Caitlin Ashworth

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23 Koh Samui hotels seek alternative state quarantine certification | The Thaiger
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Nearly 2 dozen hotels and resorts in the Thai Gulf island resort of Koh Samui are seeking certification to be alternative state quarantine facilities. Talk of a potential travel bubble scheme to the island is also set for today, the Nation Thailand reports.

8 of the 23 hotels have already gone through a government check and the rest will be checked in October, according to the Thai Hotels Association Southern Chapter East Coast. If all the hotels are approved, 1,000 rooms would be available, according to the Tourism Association of Koh Samui. They expect 90% of the hotels to be approved for state quarantine and predict around 200 international tourists to be in the first wave of visitors.

The 23 hotels on the island seeking the certification are a fair distance away from the main streets and local neighbourhoods, according to the Thai Hotels Association’s president Ruengnam Chiakwang. He says the locations make it difficult for tourists to run off during their mandatory quarantine and around 1,000 surveillance cameras are installed around the island, so officials will have an eye out.

The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration, or CCSA, is expected to talk with private representatives today about a travel bubble scheme to Koh Samui, according to the Nation. Past discussions of so called travel bubbles proposed foreign tourists from countries considered to be at low-risk for Covid-19 to be allowed to travel to select areas in Thailand. The island has a private airport owned and operated by Bangkok Airways who have traditionally charged unreasonably high air fares, compared to other flight in Thailand, for flights to the island.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Koh Samui

Raja salvage operation resumes, garbage truck, pick-up raised from seabed

Maya Taylor

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Raja salvage operation resumes, garbage truck, pick-up raised from seabed | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

An operation to raise the sunken Raja 4 ferry and its cargo of vehicles from the seabed off Koh Samui has resumed, after being delayed due to bad weather. The ferry sank on the night of August 1 as it was transporting several garbage trucks from Samui to the mainland. The ferry had set sail in bad weather and capsized when its cargo of trucks shifted during the crossing. 5 of the 16 people on board died in the accident.

Having first been suspended briefly due to bad weather a couple of weeks ago, and more recently due to storm Noul, the salvage operation is once more underway, with workers removing an 18-wheel truck and a pick-up from the seabed.

Nation Thailand reports that operators MS Service have been using 2 cranes, installed on 2 boats, to carry out the salvage operation. Prior to being lifted, the garbage truck was covered in netting, to prevent any further refuse from entering the water. Small boats were also used to pick up any rubbish that managed to escape the netting.

The Ministry of National Resources and the Environment has previously threatened to sue the ferry company over the environmental fallout from the ferry’s capsize. The ferry itself is yet to be lifted from the seabed.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Weather

Heavy rain across the country this weekend – local forecasts

The Thaiger

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Heavy rain across the country this weekend – local forecasts | The Thaiger

Heavy rain is expected across much of Thailand over the next few days, mostly as a result of the intensity of a tropical storm crossing into Vietnam today, ‘Noul’, from the South China Sea. The low pressure cell will help intensify the effects of the south west monsoon too. But the remnants of the storm won’t “slam” into Northern Thailand as one news site claimed – rather it will be a lot of rain and increased winds. The storm is expected to cross into Thailand around the Mukdahan province some time early tomorrow,

Around the country, Saturday will be the worst with rains easing during Sunday. Thailand north east ‘Isaan’ provinces will be the worst affected as they are in the direct track of the storm as it crosses Vietnam, into Laos, and then crossing Thailand’s borders in the upper north east in the early hours of tomorrow morning.

Whilst tropical storm ‘Noul’ has been packing winds from 80 – 120 kilometres per hour as it reaches the central Vietnam coast areas, including popular tourist locations like Da Nang and Hoi An, the storm will continue to dissipate as it moves inland. The storm has been tracking across the South China Sea this week, gathering strength, in a west northwesterly direction.

Residents in the coastal town of Hoi An report that it rained continuously last night, with strong winds, and that they expect widespread flooding to be reported during the day.

The forecast for heavy rain in Bangkok will probably dampen some of the enthusiasm for tomorrow’s anti-government rally to be held in and around the Thammasat University Tha Prachan campus.

Here are the forecasts for Saturday and Sunday around the country…

Bangkok

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Phuket

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Chiang Mai

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Pattaya

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Khon Kaen

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Koh Samui

Heavy rain across the country this weekend - local forecasts | News by The Thaiger

Read more about Thailand’s annual monsoons HERE.

SOURCE: weather.com

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