Phang Nga death toll 1,000 and climbing

PHANG NGA: The bodies of over 1,000 victims of the Boxing Day tsunami have already been recovered in Phang Nga and the number is expected to rise as rescue teams continue their search.

Phang Nga Governor Anuwat Metheeviboonwut announced the figure during an interview on Thai television this morning, adding that rescue workers would try to complete their searches of Tai Muang and Takuapa Districts today.

So far, 169 bodies have been recovered in Tai Muang district, and 80 bodies were pulled from the wreckage of the Sofitel Magic Lagoon Resort & Spa Khao Lak in Takuapa District. At least 100 more were pulled from the sea.

He said the search effort has been hampered by the need to clear piled-up debris in structures in which victims may be trapped.

Telecommunications in the area remain poor, he added.

The Governor said he expects the situation to improve within a few days, and called for the homeless and other survivors who fled into the hills to return to the lowlands, where it will be easier for aid workers to get food and water to them.

He also urged people who are not directly involved in the search and clean-up operation to stay out of the affected areas, which are already suffering from traffic congestion.

Many survivors from Phang Nga have since been transferred to Wachira Phuket Hospital, which is listing the names of the dead and injured at all Phuket hospitals at its website:

Those seeking information may also contact the search site people, or post a message on the Gazette Online, here.

Phuket News

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