Tropical Storm Pabuk Triggers Evacuations in Thailand, Report

Tropical Storm Pabuk Triggers Evacuations in Thailand, Report
Tropical Storm Pabuk Triggers Evacuations in Thailand, Report

Thailand is bracing for Tropical Storm Pabuk which is set to hit the region on Friday.

The Philippines has already been hit with mass flooding and Pabuk is now heading to surrounding areas of Indochina.

Such a powerful storm is particularly unusual for this time of year in the region, according to the Thai Meteorological Department.

Tourists have fled the popular resort islands of Koh Phangan and Koh Tao in their thousands amidst warnings of heavy rain, strong winds and 22ft waves.

As Storm Pabuk gains momentum, here’s everything you need to know about the storm, including the latest travel advice:

Where is Storm Pabuk?

The storm is expected to move into the Gulf of Thailand on Thursday, significantly increasing the risk of flooding in Cambodia and southern Thailand.

On Friday night, it is expected to batter Koh Phangan, Koh Tao and Koh Sumai before making its way into the mainland.

Accuweather reported that although Bangkok could be affected by rainfall and rough surf, the worst of the storm is expected to pass the capital city to the south.

You can track storm Pabuk on the Thai Meteorological Department’s website.

Are tropical storms common in Thailand?

Tropical storms which form over the South Pacific and Indian Ocean are generally uncommon in Thailand.

According to The Earth Institute at Columbia University, Thailand has been affected by 23 cyclones – particularly powerful tropical storms – between 1901 and 2004.

The Thai Meteorological Department records list Tropical Storm Harriet as the most deadly to hit Thailand, killing 935 people in 1962.

Is it safe to travel to Thailand?

Tourists are being warned to check the status of their flight before they travel.

Thanee Chougcho, Director of Phuket International Airport, said: “In order to prepare for the situation, staff have been ordered to increase their inspections of systems operating all lights at the airport, and especially on the runway.

“We are also inspecting the drainage channels more frequently to ensure against flooding.”

The Foreign Office has not imposed any travel restrictions, but has urged tourists to “follow advice from local authorities and monitor weather warnings from the Thai Meteorological Department.”

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