Connect with us

Phuket

Choke Thavorn 6 salvage to begin off Phuket today

Published

 on 

PHUKET: Efforts to salvage sunken transport vessel Choke Thavorn 6 are scheduled to begin at about 4pm today, weather permitting.

Rear Admiral Nawin Thananet, Chief of Staff of the Royal Thai Navy’s Third Area Command, said the salvage effort will be conducted by the vessel’s owner and the Harbormaster Department.

“We will just observe the operation and help them if necessary, especially if there is any leaking fuel. That falls under our area of responsibility,” he said.

Sorbent booms and chemical dispersants will be at the ready and a helicopter will be on standby if needed, he said.

Time is crucial to the operation, as the modified fishing boat now resting 34 meters beneath the surface is believed to still contain most of its cargo of 40,000 liters of diesel fuel, RADM Nawin said.

“It seems the fuel is not leaking, but we are afraid the tanks could hit something and rupture during the salvage operation. Two navy ships will also be on standby in case anything happens,” he said.

The owner is eager to re-float the vessel and salvage the valuable diesel, he said.

“We have to remain flexible about the time because of the changing sea conditions. It could be earlier or later than 4pm, depending on wind and wave action. It is also possible that we may have to postpone to a later date altogether,” he said.

The Meteorological Department’s 24-hour forecast for Phuket for the period starting at noon today calls for scattered thundershowers covering 60% of the province, southwesterly winds of up to 35 kmh and wave heights of one to two meters, higher during rainfall.

The budget for the salvage operation alone was about 100,000 baht, but the cost of the entire operation would exceed one million baht, RADM Navin said.

Part of the work included aerial monitoring of a silver sheen that appeared on the ocean’s surface over the weekend. The sheen, which reached a maximum length of about three miles and was half a mile across, quickly dissipated. Little was visible at the last check at dawn on Monday, he said.

This leads all involved to hope that the release was only about 300 to 400 liters from the fuel tank of Choke Thavorn 6, and not from its cargo.

Vessels from the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) will also be at the site to monitor the operation and any possible environmental impacts.

Wannakiat Thubthimsang, Director of the DMCR’s Phuket Marine Biological Center, said the sinking of Choke Tavorn 6 was the first incident of its type in the region.

He hopes that the vessel and its cargo can be salvaged and the environmental impact minimized, but said he doubted a release would have an impact on Phi Phi Island and other popular tourist destinations in the area.

However, the effects on the environment could only be assessed after the successful completion of the salvage operation, he said.

[For an in-depth interview with Mr Wannakiat on environmental protection issues pick up a copy of the next issue of the Phuket Gazette, available at newsstands around the island from Saturday]

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Songkhla11 mins ago

Songkhla factory fire injures 2

Malaysia17 hours ago

Malaysian beauty salon gets makeover as dentistry school

Thailand19 hours ago

Northern floods tragedy – Monks unable to help

Tourism19 hours ago

Xi’s Bangkok APEC trip to open tourist floodgates

Pattaya20 hours ago

Police to curb Pattaya Beach drinking after student gun fight

Phuket21 hours ago

9th and 10th monkeypox infections found in Phuket

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)22 hours ago

Face masks still required on public transport, in cinemas

Cannabis News22 hours ago

Pattaya man attacked at gunpoint for selling cannabis

Crime23 hours ago

Police seize 60 suspects in online ‘ghost guns’ sting

Thailand23 hours ago

Bangkok Secret Nightlife – Bangkok Red Light District Secret Museum

Coronation1 day ago

King Charles III debuts on UK coins

Politics2 days ago

Vladimir Putin officially annexed four parts of Ukraine

Transport2 days ago

Phuket Airport officials pulled tourist from van, insisted they use airport taxi

Thailand2 days ago

Thailand’s strange laws – 10 strange laws in Thailand

Politics2 days ago

The long goodbye – Which way now for PM Prayut?

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending