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Heavy rains not unusual: MET

Legacy Phuket Gazette



Heavy rains not unusual: MET | The Thaiger

PHUKET CITY: Recent heavy rainfall in Phuket indicates that the annual transition from the dry season to the rainy season is well underway – much to the relief of water supply officials.

Although many feel the monsoon rains have arrived early this year, an officer with the the Southern Meteorological Center (MET) in Mai Khao said the arrival of the monsoon at this time of year is not statistically that unusual.

Reliable rainfall statistics for Phuket date back to 1961, when monitoring began at both the Phuket City and Airport monitoring stations.

Winds from the Andaman Sea are now bringing moist air and plenty of rain to this island. We can expect plenty of rainfall until around October, when the transition back to the dry season usually begins,” he said.

December, January and February are statistically the driest months in Phuket City. They also coincide with the high season for tourism, when demand for water is highest. In February and early March, several parts of the island were already experiencing drought conditions and having to rely on water brought in by trucks.

Rainfall in Phuket City in January, February and thus far in March were recorded as 4mm, 3mm and 108mm respectively. These indicate a rather dry January and February followed by a very wet March

Based on data collected over a 30-year period, average rainfall at the Phuket City station for the three months was 22mm in January, 30mm in February and 59mm for all of March.

Rainfall at Phuket International Airport this year was 13mm (January), 3mm (February) and a whopping 337mm as of March 25.

Average rainfall amounts at the airport over a 30-year period are 36mm (January), 33mm (February) and 74mm for all of March, according to MET statistics.

Over the 30-year period from 1971-2000, annual rainfall in Phuket City was 2271mm compared to 2497 at the airport.

Steen Jansen, a Dane who records rainfall data at his hillside home in Patong, said 173 mm of rain had fallen there so far this March, well above the monthly average of 56mm since he started monitoring rainfall in 1998.

The last serious drought in Phuket came in 2004, when there were only trace amounts of rain over the first three months, and wells in some coastal areas were contaminated with saltwater from the tsunami.

Don Smith, who founded the company Rainwater Solutions in 2001, told the Gazette that with rising fuel costs and clean water becoming more scarce it makes sense now more than ever to collect and use rainwater.

His company, which employs 14 people, fits homes with continuous guttering that allows them to collect and store rainwater. The business continues to expand and is now using materials produced in Thailand that previously had to be imported, he says.


— Kamol Pirat & Stephen Fein

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Phuket declares rabies outbreak zone in Chalong

The Thaiger



Phuket declares rabies outbreak zone in Chalong | The Thaiger

A district livestock development office in Phuket province has announced a Rabies outbreak zone in the Chalong area yesterday.

Sutat Niyomthai, Chief of livestock development officer of Mueang Phuket District, has announced that the Baan Na Yai, Moo 4 village in Tambon Chalong is a designated outbreak zone after a dog tested positive for Rabies.

A rabies temporary control zone will run from January 17 to February 16 in a radius around the Moo 4 village in Tambon Chalong:

• North to Baan Ketho in Moo 7, Kathu.

• South: to Baan Bang Kontee in Moo 5, Rawai.

• East: To Baan Borea in Moo 6, Wichit.

• West: To Karon Temple in Moo 1, Karon.

Phuket declares rabies outbreak zone in Chalong | News by The ThaigerPhuket declares rabies outbreak zone in Chalong | News by The Thaiger

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Chumphon woman, working in Phuket, wins first prize in lottery

The Thaiger



Chumphon woman, working in Phuket, wins first prize in lottery | The Thaiger

A woman from Chumphon, who helps out her sister in Phuket, returned to her hometown last week where she bought a lottery ticket.

The ticket won her the first prize in the lottery.

38 year old Thai woman Chonrada Laimer from Chumphon went to Chalong Police Station yesterday with the first prize lottery ticket number 197079. The weekly lottery numbers were announced yesterday. She claims 6 million baht as the first prize.

Khun Chonrada says, “I am from Chumphon. I help my sister to sell goods in Rawai during high season. I had to visit my home in Chumphon last week and bought the lottery ticket there. It is the number of my car number plate. Then I returned to Phuket.”

“I am very happy. I will use this money to fix my parent’s house. I will still help my sister to sell goods.”

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Australian woman deported for overstaying visa by over 100 days

The Thaiger



Australian woman deported for overstaying visa by over 100 days | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Facebook/Claire Johnson

An Australian woman, who was caught overstaying her visa by 111 days, will be released from detention and deported by Thai authorities tonight.

She came to the media’s attention on Monday after sending urgent messages to a friend saying that she was being taken to a detention centre and that “they are taking my phone”.

46 year old Claire Amelia Johnson is an Australian Gold Coast resident. She will depart Bangkok on a QANTAS flight scheduled to arrive in Sydney tomorrow (Friday) morning.

She was due to return to Australia more than a week ago but on Monday evening sent messages to her friend Juliet Potter and told her that she was in an immigration detention centre in Bangkok and begged her to please “help me”.

Read The Thaiger story about her desperate pleas HERE.

Ms Johnson had been running a medical tourism business called Cosmetic Holidays International that offered cosmetic packages in Phuket”.

The business was voluntarily deregistered with the Australian Securities Commission in May 2017, after five years of operation, but her social media accounts continued to promote her cosmetic-surgery tourism business.

Thailand’s immigration chief, Surachate Hakparn, told Australia’s Fairfax media that Ms Johnson had been arrested, as well as fined, and would be deported after overstaying her tourist visa by more than 100 days.

“My Immigration Department will send her to Australia. She leaves tonight.”

Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade would say only that it was “providing consular assistance to an Australian woman detained in Thailand”, without naming Claire.

Australian woman deported for overstaying visa by over 100 days | News by The Thaiger

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