Chain of tsunami lookout towers planned

PHUKET CITY: Three beach guard stations – out of 50 being built along the coasts of Phuket and the other Andaman provinces – will be in place in Patong before the end of July. A further 16 will be built in Phuket later.

The stations will enable beach guards to monitor the sea for signs of tsunamis, as well as watch out for other problems such as drownings or boat sinkings.

The government is due to approve the budget at its meeting today.

Each 13-meter-high tower will cost between 80,000 and 100,000 baht, and will be equipped with a 20,000-baht alarm system capable of issuing alerts at 105 decibels, as well as searchlights with a range of 500 meters.

The guards who staff the towers will be trained by the Royal Thai Navy or, in the case of Phuket, by the Phuket Provincial Administration Organization (OrBorJor).

Air Vice Marshal Dr Banhan Kor-Anantakul, the Director of the Cooperation and Administration Services Office, told a meeting yesterday that the alarms would be tested regularly and that recruiting and training beach guards would be an on-going process.

The towers will operate independently of the National Disaster Warning Center alarm system and the beach guard stations being established by Phuket OrBorJor.

One station each will be installed at Prapas and Bangben Beaches in Ranong; one at Suk Samran Beach and two at Chaomai Beach in Trang and two each on Koh Tarutao and Koh Lipae in Satun.

In Krabi province, there will be one station at Koh Lanta, two each at Nopparat Thara and Ao Nang and three on Koh Phi Phi Don.

There will be 16 stations in Phang Nga, one each on Koh Ra, Koh Surin and Koh Similan, two each at Baan Koh Khao, Baan Nam Khem, Baan Bang Sak, Baan Bang Niang and Khao Lak, and three on Koh Phra Thong.

In Phuket, there will be 19 points, one each on Mai Khao, Surin, Nai Harn, Rawai and Nai Yang beaches as well as in Ao Chalong and on Koh Racha Yai, two each at Kata, Karon and Kamala Beaches and three each at Bang Tao Beach/Cherng Talay and Patong.

Phuket News
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