Phuket Airport re-opens after tsunami scare

2012-04-12 10:01
Bangkok - Flights to and from Phuket Airport were back to normal on Thursday after being shut down during a tsunami scare sparked by a 8.6-magnitude earthquake off Indonesia.

"Actually the airport already re-opened Wednesday night after the tsunami warning was lifted," said Bang-orurat Shinaprayon, director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand.

Thailand's National Disaster Warning Centre on Wednesday afternoon issued a tsunami warning to the six provinces along the Andaman Sea; Krabi, Phuket, Phangnga, Ranong, Satun and Trang.

It lifted it at about 20:00 (13:00 GMT) when it was clear the earthquake off Aceh in Indonesia had failed to generate a tsunami.

Tsunami sirens were activated and hundreds of tourists evacuated in Patong and other popular beaches on Phuket Island, 700km south of Bangkok.

Flights delayed

"The warnings systems worked well," Bang-orarut said. "All sectors, the hoteliers, government offices and the warning centre co-ordinated very well and controlled the situation," she added.

Phuket International Airport was closed for several hours during the scare, with more than 15 flights delayed.

It was unclear whether the tsunami scare would lead to a rash of hotel cancellations on Phuket, which drew 5.4 million tourists last year, Bang-orurat said.

A 9.1-magnitude quake off Aceh on December 26 2004, caused a tsunami that killed more than 5 400 people in Thailand, half of them foreign tourists in the popular beach resorts on the Andaman Sea coast.

Read more on:    thailand  |  tsunamis

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.