DAYS of continuous rain led to a key highway linking southern provinces Phang Nga and Surat Thani collapsing with this triggered by a landslide beneath it and travelers are urged to use a detour for their safety, INN News said today (August 5).
Rewat Lertdej, head of Kuraburi Highways Division in Phang Nga, said incessant downpours caused cracks to appear on Highway 401 last evening at kilometer 25+150 which is where Khao Sok National Park is and officials rushed there to check and help the vehicles passing through.
At 4 am this morning the earth beneath the highway fell off leading to it breaking up and it was shut down with the traffic channeled to an alternative route which is road 4118 running from Phang Nga’s Thap Put district to Surat Thani’s Phanom district.
People in Ranong province are urge to travel via Chumphon province.
Somporn Phornhumchiem, Phang nga director of highways, said Highway 401 is used by people in Phang Nga and nearby provinces to cross over to Surat Thani and then head for Bangkok.
It does go through steep mountains and when it rains heavily landslides frequently occur but officials have permanently resolved this problem at many points, he said, adding a backhoe and other equipment have been sent today to quickly repair the highway so that it is usable again soon.
Top: The part of Highway 401 that sank early this morning. Photo: INN News