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By the time Capt Suchart Luecha of Thalang Police and Kusoldharm rescue workers arrived, the fire had totally consumed the Chokmaha 9 cargo boat which was moored in Klong Bang Rong.
Capt Suchart explained, “We were told at 11:30pm that the boat was moored near the mangroves when the batteries exploded, apparently causing the fire.
“Attempts to put out the fire were hampered by strong winds, and it took firemen more than 30 minutes to put the fire out. By then the cargo boat had already burnt and the fire also escalated to a boat moored nearby,” he said.
“There were no injuries reported, and officers were able to save other nearby boats from the fire. Only one other boat sustained small damage from the fire, but the Chokmaha 9 was totally destroyed,” he added.
He continued, “The Chokmaha 9 was a wooden cargo boat, it was about 20 metres long and had a V8 engine. We were told that the boat was used for transporting cargo and tourists from Phuket to Koh Yao in Phang Nga province. The cost of the damage is estimated at about one million baht.”
“We are questioning the boat captain and others including the owner to find the out what actually caused the explosion and the fire,” Capt Suchart concluded.