A view of debris on a road and a partly submerged house caused by Tropical Storm Pabuk at a village in Pak Phanang district, Nakhon Si Thammarat province, Thailand, on 4 January 2019. Photo: Stringer / EPA-EFE / UPI

By Clyde Hughes
4 January 2019

(UPI) – One person died Friday as Thailand was hit by Tropical Storm Pabuk, the most powerful storm to hit the country in three decades.

The storm made landfall in Nakhon Si Thammarat, about 380 miles south of Bangkok on the east coast of the Malay Peninsula -- with sustained winds of 46 miles per hour.

Heavy rains accompanied the storm while strong gusts knocked over trees, damaged houses, and toppled power poles.

Thai authorities said the person died when a fishing boat he was in capsized in strong waves at about 2 a.m. Friday close to the coast of Pattani province, the Bangkok Post newspaper reported. Four others on the boat survived and another remained missing. […]

Experts say Pabuk is the most powerful storm to hit Thailand since Typhoon Gay in 1989, which killed hundreds of people.

It's rare for tropical storms or typhoons to hit Thailand -- the last coming in 1962 when 900 died from Tropical Storm Harriet. [more]

One dead in Tropical Storm Pabuk, most powerful storm to hit Thailand in 30 years


By Bob Henson
4 January 2019

(Weather Underground) – The world’s tropics are kicking off 2019 with an impressive spate of activity. The developments include Thailand’s first tropical cyclone on record so early in the year, two named systems in the Southwest Pacific, and the potential for an oddly out-of-season tropical cyclone in the Northeast Pacific.

The highest-impact system on Friday was Tropical Storm Pabuk, which brought heavy rains and high winds to southern Thailand in the midst of the dry season. Pabuk made landfall near Pak Phanang, about 370 miles south of Bangkok, around 12:45 pm Friday local time (12:30 am EST), according to the Thai Meteorological Department. Top sustained winds were around 60 mph, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. […]

Pabuk is the first tropical storm to strike Thailand during January, February, or March in records going back to 1951. Even during the mid-year wet season, Thailand’s coastal geography and its very low latitude keeps the number of powerful tropical cyclones on the modest side. Since 1891, only one hurricane-strength cyclone has made landfall in Thailand. That was Typhoon Gay, a compact, fast-strengthening system that struck the east coast in Chumpon Province at Category 3 strength (115-mph sustained winds). Gay caused an estimated 833 deaths and roughly $500 million USD in damage. [more]

Pabuk Slams Thailand; Watching an Unusual Setup in Northeast Pacific

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