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Government evacuating Thais from Maui after fires

PHOTO: Wikimedia

Thailand’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs is coordinating assistance for Thai nationals caught up in the wildfires ravaging the US state of Hawaii, specifically on Maui and the coastal town of Lahaina.

According to a report from the National News Bureau of Thailand, a number of Thais have already been evacuated to safety and are either being housed at shelters or in areas unaffected by the fires. It’s understood that 12 Thai students who were taking part in Hawaii’s Work and Travel program have been evacuated.

The Royal Thai Consulate in Los Angeles reported 89 deaths yesterday, August 13. According to Kanchana Patarachoke from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there are around 5,000 Thai nationals living in Hawaii, based on data from 2020. How many of them are living on Maui is not known at this stage. Maui has been ravaged by wildfires which first broke out on Tuesday, August 8, almost completely destroying the coastal town of Lahaina.

The ministry has set up an official Maui Rescue chat room on the LINE app and is urging the Thai community in Hawaii to contact the consulate in Los Angeles. Officials say the consulate will provide assistance in the event that travel documents have been damaged or destroyed in the fires.

The government says anyone concerned about Thai nationals in the area of the fires should also contact the consulate in Los Angeles via the official LINE account, @thaiconsulate.la.

SOURCE: National News Bureau of Thailand

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