Chonburi practices emergency-response plans with Navy, PTT

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Chonburi officials practiced emergency response and evacuation drills that simulated procedures they’d follow if the province suffered a disastrous explosion or chemical leak.

The Aug. 27-29 drills, run with the participation of the Royal Thai Navy and oil company PTT Co., covered communications, evacuation procedures and emergency-response plans. Teams were led by Chonburi Gov. Khomsan Ekachai, Navy Vice Adm. Chumpol Wongwaekhin and PTT Manager Surath Jiemlertwiwat.

Chonburi Gov. Khomsan Ekachai answers media questions during the emergency drill. Chonburi Gov. Khomsan Ekachai answers media questions during the emergency drill.

The exercise followed a hypothetical emergency at PTT’s Eastern Petroleum Terminal. It began with a telephone text message alert from the oil company to announce the crisis and seek status reports from community leaders in Ban Thong, Laem Chabang and Udom Bay. Once the all-clear was sounded, PTT blasted another SMS to participants to inform them of how the emergency was resolved.

The exercise also tested communications between PTT and Laem Chabang officials, keeping them apprised whether an evacuation was needed. In such as case, residents would be relocated Laem Chabang City Hall or be moved for a formal relocation center.

Community leaders have been briefed on evacuation-contingency plans and will be invited to participate in future drills, possibly helping transport residents to evacuation centers.