11 July 2024

Fourteen Phuket-bound flights were diverted to other airports this morning, due to poor visibility, as the resort island was lashed by heavy rain before dawn on Sunday, causing widespread flooding.

Monchai Tanod, director of Phuket airport, said that the airport itself was not flooded, but the visibility was so poor between 7am and 9am that the pilots could not see the runway, forcing them to divert to Surat Thani, Krabi, Bangkok, Penang or Langkawi.

The airport’s public relations office has informed departing passengers of flight delays until the weather conditions improve.

Sophon Thongsai, chief of the provincial public disaster prevention and mitigation office, said that almost the entire island was hit by flooding this morning, with the worst being in Thalang district.

Numerous roads became impassable to small cars and red silt-laden rainwater was seen gushing off the mountains in some areas. Officials said that the floodwater will ultimately drain into the sea.

The provincial meteorological office said that the rainfall is expected to ease tomorrow.