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Boat explodes, sinks at Boat Lagoon

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KOH KAEW: Two Thai men are being treated for serious burns in the intensive-care unit (ICU) at Vachira Phuket Hospital after the speedboat they were working on exploded at the Boat Lagoon about 11:30 am today.

Eyewitness Pisek Manasit told the Gazette that the gas tank on board the 35-foot fiberglass speedboat Sakila 6 caught fire and exploded within minutes.

“The fire started where the gas is stored in the hold of the boat, not at the engine. An explosion followed, which sent fiberglass into the air. Then I saw two men on the boat were on fire,” K. Pisek said.

The men on board Sakila 6, Capt Amnart Suansan, 27, and Nopparit Mahakarn, 19, managed to run ashore and were rushed to Vachira Hospital.

The fire quickly spread to another 35-foot fiberglass speedboat moored alongside, the Elixir 1.

A total of six fire trucks arrived to put out the blaze, but were unable to contain the intense flames before they gutted the Elixir 1 and eventually sank the Sakila 6.

Sakila 6 had left for Koh Yao Yai in the morning, but the crew returned after the boat had a problem with its engine. They were waiting for a mechanic to come and fix it,” said K. Pisek, who owns the speedboat Apiwarin, which was moored alongside Elixir 1.

“I think it took about 15 minutes for firefighters to arrive, but by that time Elixir 1 had caught on fire. I quickly moved my speedboat away from there,” he said.

K. Pisek said that the owner of Sakila 6 is Nat Wongharn and that the boat was valued at about 2.3 million baht.

Elixir 1 is owned by a hotel on Koh Yao Yai, he said, adding that the boat was also valued at 2.3 million baht.

 

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