PHUKET: Local authroities this morning ordered Phuket Rassada Port closed as strong wind and waves lashed the coast and driving rain wreaked havoc with motorists across the island.

Hundreds of tourists waited dockside as the ban took effect, as Rassada Port, located on the east side of Phuket Town, is a major jump-off point for tourists boarding ferries and tour boats to islands in Phang Nga Bay and along the Andaman coast.

Meanwhile, yachts moored in the bay at Ao Yon, further north on Phuket's east coast, were grounded as the storm took hold.

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