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Tsunami risk is statistically very low

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Tsunami risk is statistically very low | The Thaiger

by Pratch Rujivanarom

The chances of an imminent repeat tsunami in the Andaman Sea is remote, while the tsunami risk in the Gulf of Thailand is even smaller to nearly impossible chance, say leading seismologists in the wake of public tsunami fears triggered by the recent devastation in Palu, Indonesia.

Nevertheless, say experts, the authorities, business sector and citizens in tsunami risk areas should swiftly and strictly follow disaster response and evacuation plans. Even though a tidal wave is unlikely to hit Thailand’s coasts soon, Paiboon Nuannin, geophysics lecturer at Prince of Songkhla University’s Faculty of Science, notes that earthquake disasters remain beyond human prediction, and so public preparedness will save lives in an unforeseen emergency situation.

Concern over a tsunami re-emerged this week, especially on social media, after a deadly one-two punch of an earthquake and tsunami hit the Indonesian city of Palu last Friday. The two-part assault caused serious destruction to the city and killed more than 1,200 people and made global headline as well as sometimes fearful social media discussion.

Panic is unwarranted, say academics. But they also caution that Thailand’s two coastlines – the Andaman Sea and Gulf of Thailand – are not totally safe from a future tsunami disaster. Paiboon pointed to the long subduction zone lying beneath the Andaman Sea from Sumatra Island all the way to India, which is large enough to have the capacity to generate a large earthquake that could trigger a tsunami and threaten the Andaman coast again.

However, he said, given the normal period between tsunamis in this region, there is a very low chance that the six Andaman provinces would be hit by another tsunami disaster in the near future.

“Interviews with older people in the Andaman provinces found that even the oldest among them could not remember a tsunami disaster ever hitting the Andaman coast in their lifetime before the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004, so we can conclude that the return period for a tsunami in Andaman Sea is over 100 years,” he said.

The threat of a tsunami in the Gulf of Thailand was even less likely, perhaps close to nearly zero, Paiboon said.

“There is a theoretical chance that Thailand’s Gulf of Thailand coastline will be affected by a tsunami in a scenario in which there is a very strong earthquake and tsunami in the South China Sea off the coast of Philippines”, he noted.

“However, the return period for such an event is less than once every 400 years. Even if such an unlikely event occurred in the Gulf of Thailand, the strength of the wave and impacts to the coast would be minimal”, explained National Disaster Warning Centre’s senior expert Admiral Kohlak Charoenrook.

After the wave entered the Gulf of Thailand, most of its power would be absorbed by the shallow water and gentle seafloor slope inside the gulf, he said.

People in the Andaman provinces also do not need to worry about a tsunami threat triggered by the ongoing eruption of a volcano at India’s Barren Island, Kohlak said.

“That volcano is too small to cause a powerful eruption capable of generating a tsunami.”

Despite the lack of imminent risk, Paiboon said most important is that all stakeholders plan their disaster response. Hi-tech earthquake monitoring system and tsunami monitoring buoys in the oceans alert us to tsunamis almost instantly. But if authorities and the public do not know how to properly follow emergency procedures, the loss of life, injuries and damages from both the natural disaster and a poorly organised evacuation could be substantial.

“It is very important that the authorities have clear orders and procedures in an emergency response plan, that the warning system is widely accessible, and that people take the emergency response drill seriously and fully comply with official procedures,” he stressed.

“In the real situation of a tsunami disaster on the Andaman coast, the disaster warning and evacuation must be completed within 20 minutes after the tsunami is generated, as we have only 30 to 60 minutes before the wave hits the beaches.”

Tsunami risk is statistically very low | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation

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Krabi

Four metre, 15 kilogram king cobra found in a Krabi village

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Four metre, 15 kilogram king cobra found in a Krabi village | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Kapook.com

On October 13, Krabi Pitak Pracha Foundation, a local volunteer rescue team, received a report requiring (probably screaming) for help from a house project security guard to help catch a ‘big snake’ that lived inside the drain of the village.

Kapook reports that the rescue team arrived at the village where the security guard guided them to the drain. They even prayed with the land spirit to bless them on the job ahead of them before entering inside the drain.

They explained that it was difficult and dangerous job, had to be very careful and move fast. They finally found the snake and it took about an hour to catch the giant reptile. The rescue team said that the snake is actually a king cobra that was four-metres long and weighed 15 kilograms.

Meanwhile, the village security guard said that the king cobra had lived inside the village drain for a while and sometimes came up above ground and the village’s public area,s which frightened the residents, so he had to reach out to the rescue team for help.

SOURCE: Kapook.com

Four metre, 15 kilogram king cobra found in a Krabi village | News by The Thaiger Four metre, 15 kilogram king cobra found in a Krabi village | News by The Thaiger Four metre, 15 kilogram king cobra found in a Krabi village | News by The Thaiger

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Environment

Thailand’s Maya Bay recovering well but no date set for re-opening

May Taylor

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Thailand’s Maya Bay recovering well but no date set for re-opening | The Thaiger

Renowned marine biologist Thon Thamrongnawasawat says Koh Phi Phi’s Maya Bay is showing good signs of recovery, having been closed to visitors for over a year now.

“After being closed for many months to facilitate natural restoration, the beach’s green forests have started to recover and coral reefs in the bay area have also been showing recovery and these are encouraging signs.”

A report in The Nation says Maya Bay’s coral reefs and ecosystems have been revived, with photos from the marine national park operation centre depicting a shark swimming in clear water, surrounded by colourful coral reefs.

Thailand's Maya Bay recovering well but no date set for re-opening | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: Thon Thamrongnawasawat and the Marine National Park Operation Centre

A date has not yet been confirmed for Maya Bay to re-open to visitors, and while Thon has praised the work of all parties involved in the bay’s rehabilitation, floating garbage remains a threat to coral reefs. However, he adds that officials and volunteers continue to monitor the reefs and remove debris.

Plans are afoot for a visitor walking trail to ensure trees are not damaged, along with a new boat pier and a ticket booking system with a strict limit on numbers.

Writing on Facebook, Thon refers to the growth of diversified coral reefs, blacktip reef sharks swimming freely, and beach forests turning green.

“This is the mission for the future to ensure that later generations would not condemn us (for destroying nature)”.

While refusing to speculate on when the bay might re-open, he hints that it won’t be far away, saying “new hope is approaching”.

Although excited about the improvements, some social media users suggest that Maya Bay should remain closed for a few more years, or forever. The demands from local tourism bodies make the former much more likely than the latter.

SOURCE: The Nation

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Krabi

‘Krabi Premium’ launched by the Tourism Authority of Thailand

The Thaiger

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‘Krabi Premium’ launched by the Tourism Authority of Thailand | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Sunset Cruise at Nam Mao Bay, Krabi – TAT

The Tourism Authority of Thailand Krabi Office is launching its ‘Krabi Premium’ marketing concept aimed at delivering ‘the best of the best’ of the southern Thai province.

The TAT says it will offer “meaningful experiences to tourists” to hopefully stimulate spending and generate additional revenue for local communities in the province. The initiative also aims to promote responsible tourism while encouraging the exchange of ideas between the locals, tourists and tourism operators on how to promote the concept both locally and to domestic and international tourists.

Apichai Aranyig, Director of the TAT Krabi Office, said the ‘Krabi Premium’ concept started off as a project to entice more domestic tourists, both Thai and expatriates living in Thailand, to Krabi through the launch of the ‘We are Krabi’ promotion.

“The concept is now expanding to cover all potential markets. Through partnerships with tour operators and hotels, international tourists will know more of what can be experienced in Krabi while Thai tourists will know they are welcomed all-year round. This averts misconceptions that hotels and tourism operators in Krabi only want Thai tourists during the low season,”

“The concept is also meant to encourage hotels, tourism operators and Krabi locals to be good hosts and treat tourists like family members coming for a visit. By viewing tourists this way, they will want to make sure all visitors have memorable experiences.”

According to Mr. Apichai, the concept is not about selling high-end or expensive products, but is focusing on promoting experiences based on the treasures of ‘Krabi Premium: Emerald of the Andaman’ whereby emerald represents lush green forests, mountains and islands as well as the turquoise of the sea.

‘Krabi Premium’ launched by the Tourism Authority of Thailand | News by The Thaiger

Hin Ha Luk Island, or Ha Island or Tuk Narima Island, is the group of five islands in Mu Ko Lanta National Marine Park, Krabi – TAT

The line-up for Krabi Premium includes…

Attractions: Krabi boasts 154 islands plus three national parks including Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park as well as five unique local communities.

Accommodation: Krabi is home to multiple world-class hotels, and more importantly, many hotels in Krabi are known for their eco-friendly operations.

Thai food: this category lists authentic Krabi dishes and where to find them plus top restaurants and eateries.

“Krabi is a cultural melting pot where people of different ethnic origins and beliefs co-exist in harmony. Tourists – domestic and international – can learn more about Krabi’s history while experiencing the provincial way of life at the five local communities who are ready to welcome visitors with open arms.”

In addition, Krabi is known for its environment-friendly, sustainable tourism values and is seen as a model ecotourism destination. In 2018, Krabi received ‘Global Low-Carbon Ecological Scenic Spot’ honours at the 2018 Annual Session of Global Forum on Human Settlements and Sustainable Cities award ceremony, UNESCAP.

Krabi has also championed its campaign for ‘no single-use plastic, no foam containers’ for over a year. This was practiced at several events including at the recent Krabi Naga Fest where vendors opted against single-use plastics while using solar energy or biodiesel fuels for electrical generation.

SOURCE: Tourism Authority of Thailand

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