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Haze shrouds Phuket, neighboring provinces

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET: Unusually hazy conditions over the island today are normal and not the result of any forest fires in the region, Phuket’s top meteorologist says.

Wiwat Intarapanich, Chief of Weather Forecasting at the Meteorological Department’s Southern Meteorological Center (West Coast), told the Gazette this afternoon that the haze is normal for the southern region at this time of year and marks the beginning of the transition from the rainy to dry season.

“We have had a lot of calls asking about the origin of the haze,” he noted.

The haze is the result of a cold air mass extending down from China and mixing with warm moist ocean air, he explained.

Atmospheric conditions are expected to improve within a few days, though heavy rains could bring about a more rapid improvement, he said.

“Visibility is still about 4-5 kilometers and thus does not warrant restrictions on air or sea travel,” he said.

The 24-hour weather forecast starting from 5 pm today predicts for continued haze with scattered thundershowers covering about 60% of the area and isolated heavy rains. Northeasterly winds prevail at 15-35 kmh and offshore wave height at 1-2 meters.

 

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