This is a video and selection of photos taken at Thailand’s first ever night-time drill exercise for a tsunami emergency held at the beach road and Rachaprachanukroa 36 School in Kamala village, Phuket, on Tuesday evening, 14 December 2010, from about 7 – 9 pm. The previous Kamala school there was badly damaged and about 250 people lost their lives in Phuket and over 5,000 in Thailand during the tsunami on 26 December 2004 at about 10am, and previous drills since then had always been held during the day time. A few real tsunami alerts and evacuations have occurred at night in the past five years but never a real drill exercise, so Kamala was chosen a pilot location.
The tsunami tower and emergency vehicles sounded the alarm in various languages, but mostly in Thai, at about 8pm, saying that an earthquake in the Andaman Sea had caused a potentially dangerous tsunami, then volunteers and people on the beach road and nearby ran into the school’s compound and up to the 1st floor shelter room about 10-15 meters above sea level.
Later emergency rescue vehicles brought in supposedly injured people. Officials then simulated a power cut and helped provide torches and powerful mobile floodlights; firetrucks arrived with ladders and equipment to save students stuck up trees and brought them down with flying fox ropes and swings. Various tests of treating injured in cars and the shelter were held for about one hour. Weerawat Chanpen, a Vice Governor of Phuket observed the whole exercise and finally thanked the volunteers for their useful exercise drill.
The video shows most of the sequence of the drill’s events with a running commentary in Thai language by an official at the scene.