BANGKOK — The tropical storm that left at least two people dead and hundreds of homes damaged has moved over the western coast of Thailand where its ferocity has dropped, the national weather service said Saturday.
Although the storm – called Pabuk – is now a tropical depression since entering the Andaman Sea, its effects continue to be felt in multiple provinces of Thailand, including the south and Bangkok. Rains are expected in the capital city while residents in the southern region are advised to keep boats ashore today.
Affected provinces include Phetchaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Chumphon, Surat Thani, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Ranong, Phang Nga, Phuket and Krabi. Those living in these areas are advised to be on the lookout for possible flash floods caused by severe rain.
Along the paths where Pabuk left a scene of devastation, officials and residents are inspecting the damage. Government Savings Bank announced today its debtors whose homes were damaged or destroyed by the storm would have their loan payment deferred for two years.
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One fisherman drowned after his boat capsized in the storm, and a motorist was killed in Nakhon Si Thammarat after he crashed his car into a tree amid the heavy rainstorm.
Damages are still being assessed as of Saturday. Authorities in Songkhla said more than 6,000 households were affected by the storm in that province alone. In Pak Phanang district in Nakhon Si Thammarat, believed to be the worst hit area, many houses were completely torn down.
Samui Airport, which closed yesterday due to the strong winds, reopened today. Nakhon Si Thammarat Airport is set to reopen in the afternoon.
Rough waves also struck a district as far northeast as Sattahip in Chonburi, damaging some homes there. Road floods were reported in Phetchaburi and Samut Prakan provinces.
But in Nakhon Si Thammarat, where Pabuk made landfall yesterday, the rains appeared to ease Saturday morning and the sun was shining over the battered coasts. Evacuees in some shelters were allowed to return home this morning.
Those still needing assistance in the south can contact tourist police or disaster offices for information about shelters and evacuation orders at:
- Phuket Area (DDPM): 076-218-444
- Koh Samui and Nearby Islands : 077-430-018 (Tourist Police); 077-420-953 or 199 (DDPM)
- Krabi and Nearby Islands (Tourist Police): 075-637-208
- Nakhon Si Thammarat (DDPM): 081-797-5499