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Powerful storm gives tourists a scare in Srinakarin Dam lake

Tourists rest on one of the three rafthouses on an island in the lake of Srinakarin Dam in Kanchanaburi on Sunday morning, waiting for a ferry. (Photos by Piyarach Chongcharoen)

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Three tourist raft houses were hit by a powerful storm in the middle of the lake of Srinakarin Dam in Si Sawat district on Saturday night, forcing 75 tourists to stay overnight on an island.

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Tourist raft houses hit by storm in Srinakarin Dam

Piyarach Chongcharoen

KANCHANABURI – Three tourist raft houses were hit by a powerful storm in the middle of the lake of Srinakarin Dam in Si Sawat district on Saturday night, forcing 75 tourists to stay overnight on an island.

The Thai tourists, who were students of the army's quartermaster school, were safely brought in a ferry from the island back to a pier in Si Sawat district on Sunday morning.

A tourist said they rented three raft houses for a sightseeing tour and a party from an operator. The raft houses were then hauled by a motor boat, departing from Tha Kradan pier in Si Sawat district at about 3pm on Saturday.

At about 7pm, when the rafts were in the middle of the Srinakarin Dam lake, a powerful storm hit. The waves sent the raft houses up and down, causing the tourists to panic. One of the raft houses hit a big tree stump in the water, causing the power for all of them to go off, and chaos ensued.

The raft house operators told all tourists to wear life jackets and stay in the middle raft house which was the biggest and strongest. They hauled the three raft houses through high waves to an island in the middle of the lake in tambon Mae Krabung and contacted rescue units for help. All tourists were then evacuated to the island where they stayed overnight.

The tourists spent Saturday night on a small island.

Two of the raft houses were badly damaged.

Sak Somboonto, the Kanchanaburi governor, instructed Thanon Panpilat, the Si Sawat district chief, to rush to the island to provide assistance to the tourists.

A double-decker ferry, with a capacity of take up to 150 passengers, was dispatched to the island to take the tourists back to Tha Kradan pier on Sunday morning. They safely landed at the pier after a two-hour ride with all their belongings.

Wisarut Inyaem, director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand's Kanchanaburi office, said the accident was force majeure. He said his office had stressed to the operators of raft houses to properly follow safety measures and regularly conduct safety drills and this had paid off.

He was relieved there were no losses of lives or property during the incident.

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Vocabulary:

accident (noun): an unpleasant event that happens unexpectedly and causes injury or damage - อุปัทวเหตุ, เหตุบังเอิญ

assistance : help; aid - ความช่วยเหลือ

belongings : the things you own - ข้าวของเครื่องใช้

capacity : the total amount or number that can be contained - ปริมาณสูงสุดที่จะรับได้

chaos : a very confused situation - ความโกลาหล

conduct : to do something in an organised way; to carry out — - ลงมือทำ, ดำเนิน, ปฏิบัติ

contact : to communicate with someone - ติดต่อ

dam : a wall built across a river to stop the water from flowing, especially in order to create a lake or to help to produce electric power - เขื่อน

depart : to leave - ออกจาก

dispatch (verb): to send someone or something somewhere - ส่งออกไป, ส่งคนออกไป

double-decker : a boat, bus, etc. that has two levels, i.e., two decks - เรือ, รถบัส, ฯลฯ ที่มีสองชั้น

drill : an activity which practises a particular skill and often involves repeating the same thing several times - การฝึกหัด

ensue (verb): to happen after something else, often as a result of it - ตามมา; ที่ตามมา

evacuate : to cause to leave a place because it is not safe - เคลื่อนย้ายออกจาก

ferry : a boat for taking passengers across an area of water, especially as a regular service - เรือรับส่งข้ามฟาก

force majeure (noun): unexpected circumstances, such as war, that can be used as an excuse when they prevent somebody from doing something that is written in a contract - เหตุสุดวิสัย

haul : to pull something heavy slowly and with difficulty - ลาก

incident : something that happens, usually something bad - เหตุการณ์

instruct (verb): to tell somebody to do something, especially in a formal or official way - สั่ง

lake : a large area of water that is surrounded by land - ทะเลสาบ, บึง

life jacket : a jacket without sleeves, that can be filled with air, designed to help you float if you fall in water - เสื้อชูชีพ

measures (noun): actions taken to solve a particular problem - มาตรการ

operator (noun): a person or company that runs a business - ผู้ดำเนินกิจการทางธุรกิจ, ผู้ประกอบธุรกิจ

overnight : the period of one night - ข้ามคืน

panic : to have a sudden strong feeling of fear or worry that causes you to be unable to think clearly or calmly - ตื่นตกใจ

passenger : someone who travels in a motor vehicle, aircraft, train, or ship but is not the driver or one of the people who works on it - ผู้โดยสาร

pay off (verb): to be successful and bring good results - ประสบความสำเร็จ

pier : a platform sticking out into water which people walk along or use when getting onto or off boats - ท่าเรือชนิดยื่นออกไปในน้ำ, สะพานที่ยื่นออกไปในน้ำ

properly : in a way that is correct and/or appropriate - อย่างเหมาะสม, อย่างถูกต้อง

property : things, especially valuable things, that are owned by someone - ทรัพย์สมบัติ, ทรัพย์สิน

provide : to give someone/ something that they want or need - จัดหาให้, จัดเตรียมไว้ให้

quartermaster (noun): a military officer responsible for providing housing, food, clothing, and other supplies. -

raft : a small light flat boat made of wood, rubber or plastic - แพ เรือแพ

regularly : done or happening often, especially with the same time and space in between each activity and the next - เป็นประจำ, เสมอๆ

relieved : happy that something unpleasant has not happened or has ended - โล่งใจ, เบาใจ, หมดกังวล, ผ่อนคลาย

rent : to pay money for the use of something for a period of time - เช่า

rescue : saving a person or animal from a dangerous or unpleasant situation - การช่วยชีวิต

rush : to move or do something very quickly - รีบเร่ง, วิ่ง

sightseeing (noun): going around a place to see the interesting things there; on a tour, go on excursion - การเยี่ยมชม,การท่องเที่ยวดูสิ่งของหรือทิวทัศน์

stress : to emphasise something such as an idea, fact or detail; to explain why something is important - เน้น

stump (noun): the bottom part of a tree left in the ground after the rest has fallen or been cut down - ตอไม้

unit : a group of people who work or live together, especially for a particular purpose - หน่วย,กอง,กลุ่ม

waves (noun): raised lines of water that move across the surface of the sea, ocean, etc - คลื่น

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