Massive downpour leaves Phuket reeling

Heavy rains and high tides left much of Phuket municipality looking like a lake until late afternoon yesterday when drainage efforts succeeded.

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Heavy rainful and high tides left much of Phuket municipality under water yesterday morning before authorities were finally able to drain most of the flood water away by late afternoon. Photos by ACHADTAYA CHUENNIRAN

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Massive downpour leaves Phuket reeling

Achadtaya Chuenniran

A flash flood wreaked widespread havoc in Phuket Wednesday as Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra promised compensation for the damage.

Ms Yingluck said the government will provide financial assistance based on the actual damage to economic zones, shops and houses. She did not give the rates of compensation.

The resort island was pounded by heavy downpours on Tuesday night with high tides yesterday morning inhibiting drainage of floodwater.

The flood ravaged many areas in Muang, Thalang and Kathu districts. In Kathu, the tourist-packed Patong beach also took a battering.

Ms Yingluck said she had been updated about the flood situation in Phuket and local authorities had warned of flash floods in the province two days in advance.

The widespread inundation paralysed traffic, caused eight schools to suspend classes and even delayed air flights.

Thep Kasattri Road, which links central Phuket with the international airport, was heavily flooded, causing motorists to take a detour.

The road to the downtown municipal area was impassable to small vehicles.

Thep Kasattri Road's out-bound traffic was very slow and at a standstill in some areas. Parts of the road in tambon Koh Kaew were under a metre of water.

Thai Airways International delayed its 10.55am flight by half an hour to wait for passengers held up by the flood.

Parts of the Muang Mai-Pa Khlok road in front of Sithisunthorn Bamrung School were reported to be one metre under water. Villages Nos. 1, 4, 6 and 8 of tambon Pa Khlok were under deep floodwater.

In the Patong beach area, the intersection at Patong Hospital was also one metre under water. Mountain runoff was blamed for the collapse of a section of the Kathu-Patong Road.

Local officials yesterday rushed to drain water out of flooded areas throughout the day. The floods eventually receded and the situation began to return to normal about 4pm.

The Meteorology Department says rainfall caused by the southwestern monsoon is expected to continue for the rest of the week in Phuket, Phangnga, Ranong, Krabi and Trang.

tide – the regular rise and fall of the level of the sea (the tides) ปรากฏการณ์น้ำขึ้นน้ำลง, กระแสน้ำขึ้นน้ำลง
municipality – a town, city or district with its own local government เทศบาล
authorities – people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ
drain – to cause water or fluid to flow out ระบายออก
massive – very large ใหญ่มหาศาล
downpour –a lot of rain in a short time ฝนตกหนักมาก, พายุฝน
reel – to feel very shocked, upset or confused ตกตะลึง
flash flood – a flood that happens suddenly without warning น้ำที่เกิดท่วมในที่ต่ำโดยฉับพลันทันทีและไหลลดลงอย่างรวดเร็ว
wreak havoc – to cause something bad to happen in a violent and often uncontrolled way ทำให้เกิด ความเสียหายอย่างรุนแรง, ทำให้เกิดความหายนะ
widespread – happening or existing in many places, or affecting many people อย่างแพร่หลาย
compensation – money that someone receives because something bad has happened to them  เงินชดเชย
financial – involving money เกี่ยวกับเงิน, ทางการเงิน
zone – an area that has an important or typical feature; an area where a particular activity is allowed or not allowed พื้นที่, บริเวณ, เขต
rate – an amount of money that is paid or charged  อัตรา
pound – to hit something/somebody hard many times ตีกระหน่ำ, โจมตีต่อเนื่อง
inhibit – to make it difficult for a process to start or continue in a normal way  ยับยั้ง, ขัดขวาง, กั้นขวาง
ravage – to destroy something or damage it very badly ทำให้เสียหาย, ทำลาย, ล้างผลาญ
battering – a damaging event การทุบตีอย่างรุนแรง
update – to get or give the most recent information or news about something ให้ข้อมูลใหม่ๆ
local – in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about  ท้องถิ่น
warn – to make someone aware of a possible problem or danger เตือน
in advance – before the time that is expected; before something happens ล่วงหน้า
inundation – flooding น้ำท่วม
paralyse – to cause to be unable to move or function ทำให้เป็นอัมพาต
suspend – to stop something for a short time หยุดชั่วคราว
delay – to do something later than is planned or expected เลื่อนเวลา
link – to connect เชื่อม
impassable – of a road or path that cannot be travelled on because it is blocked or because of bad weather conditions  ซึ่งผ่านไปไม่ได้
detour – a road or route that is used when the usual one is closed  เส้นทางอ้อม
out-bound – travelling towards a particular point, particularly away from a city ขาออก (opposite of in-bound ขาเข้า)
standstill – a complete stop การหยุดนิ่ง, การหยุดชะงัก
hold up – to cause something to be delayed ทำให้ล่าช้า
intersection – a place where roads, lines, etc., join or cross each other สี่แยก
runoff – rainfall that cannot be taken in by the soil and which flows into rivers, lakes or the sea น้ำหลาก, ปริมาณของเหลวที่ไหลออก
collapse – falling down suddenly การพังลงมา  
section – any of the parts into which something is divided ส่วน, ส่วนที่ตัดออก, ส่วนย่อย
rush – to move or do something very quickly รีบเร่ง, วิ่ง
eventually – at the end of a period of time or at the end of a process ในที่สุด
recede – to move back; to move further away into the distance; subside ลดลง, ถอยหลัง
meteorology – the scientific study of weather  อุตุนิยมวิทยา
monsoon – the seasonal changes Asian countries during which winds shift bringing more rain (southwest monsoon) and less rain (northeast monsoon)  มรสุม

Related search: Phuket flashflood

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Writer: Terry Fredrickson
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