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Tsunami warnings

Valencia, Spain
Level Contributor
14 posts
15 reviews
10 helpful votes
Tsunami warnings

I am going to Phuket tomorrow and feeling a little uneasy after reading that tsunami towers are not working as they should. Towers should play the national anthem twice a monthto make sure that the warning system is working properly. I have read that they are not and that some people were warned too late in 2010 when a suspected tsunami was going to happen.

Can anyone advise me as to how you are warned and what warnings are given in the night.

Thanks and sorry for such a depressing post.

Worldwide
Level Contributor
3,092 posts
643 reviews
747 helpful votes
1. Re: Tsunami warnings

There have been stories - not all good - about the operability of warning towers, and about their testing procedures (and effectiveness of same).

Checking the two DART tsunami buoys placed offshore in that area (one can do this on the Web), I see that the Thai one now appears to be working (formerly it wasn't) and delivering data, but the Indonesian one is not delivering data at present.

I hate to mention this, but there IS a bit of seismic activity offshore NW Sumatra, not far from where the earthquake that caused the 2004 tsunami occurred. Magnitudes about 5 (the big one in 2004 was a huge ~9). These are too small to cause a tsunami according to current thinking. They could be foreshocks of another bigger one, though are most likely just normal stress release in that area (e.g. good for our safety if they remain frequent and small). But I haven't been monitoring activity in that area, so don't have correct context.

I wouldn't trust the warning system. Of course, the odds of such an earthquake and tsunami as 26Dec2004 are very small. The greater risk is a local transport, jet-ski, or other scam! Stay low-key and cool-tempered and smiling, don't rent a motor bike or jet-ski, keep monitoring any bar tab that you might run up, read up on the other scams to avoid, and enjoy your visit!

Gold Coast
Destination Expert
for Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
26,356 posts
70 reviews
62 helpful votes
2. Re: Tsunami warnings

Go, enjoy yourself and if you're worried just get accommodation away from the beach and on higher ground - you really can't think about these things. I hate flying, but if I let my fear take over I would never go anywhere.

Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
15,864 posts
3. Re: Tsunami warnings

I agree with Cassnu. Anything can happen at any time anywhere. Sink holes appear in the US without warning, London has flood risk problems, etc etc. The chances of a second tsunami (while possible) in Phuket are tiny. If you worry about all the natural dangers around us, you'd never move from your home (which might then be struck by lightning).

Valencia, Spain
Level Contributor
14 posts
15 reviews
10 helpful votes
4. Re: Tsunami warnings

Thanks Guys!

I know I won't go anywhere if I keep worrying about natural disasters! I just thought about it in the middle of the night and started panicking! My holiday from Siem Reap to Phnom Phen and then Bangkok all flooding just got me worrying!!

Note to self....relax and enjoy...keeping one eye open!!

Edited: 24 October 2011, 06:55
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
15,864 posts
5. Re: Tsunami warnings

Don't forget that the world will end in December 2012 - make the most of it!

Gold Coast
Destination Expert
for Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
26,356 posts
70 reviews
62 helpful votes
6. Re: Tsunami warnings

Ah yes, the end of the Mayan calendar, better get some holidays booked up quickly then!

Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
15,864 posts
7. Re: Tsunami warnings

But Thailand will survive as its already 2554 here and 2012 passed peacefully LOL.

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
180 helpful votes
8. Re: Tsunami warnings

We stay in Khao Lak, the area that was most affected in Thailand by the 2004 Tsunami. Our accommodation is 5 minutes from the beach but also less than that to the clearly marked Tsunami Evacuation routes. Having experienced one evacuation a couple of years ago when there was a similar earthquake near Indonesia to the current one mentioned in reply #1, we are very comfortable in the situation despite that incident not triggering the local warning klaxons as thieves had unbelievably stolen valuable copper wiring rendering them ineffective.

However, local people from all areas previously affected including Phuket to the South upto Ranong in the North having as little faith in the official warning systems have set up their own unofficial monitoring and warning systems and transmit their own warnings to contacts in various locations including to resort owners and the word is spread very quickly and, in our case, BEFORE the official warning was received.

Our resort owner woke us, as the incident was very early morning and we were directed to the Evacuation Route and in our case to his home 1.5 kms inland and uphill beyond the "threatened" zone until the "All Clear" was given.

Since then, the official infrastructure has been repaired and improved and I can testify that the playing of the national anthem was a regular occurrence during our last stay November 2010 to April 2011.

New Milton, United...
Level Contributor
4,416 posts
1 review
7 helpful votes
9. Re: Tsunami warnings

there was a tsunami last night, the shower overflowed into the room, i managed to survive tho!

Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
180 helpful votes
10. Re: Tsunami warnings

Poor taste Andy!