''They need to learn and we have our own ways of controlling these people,'' the President of the Patong Jet-Ski Association, Nucha Petchvimol, told Governor Maitree Intrusud.
The meeting at Phuket Provincial Hall in Phuket City brought together a representative from Phuket's Marine 5 Office and jet-ski overseers from Patong, Kamala, Karon, Bang Tao and Naka island.
''Forget the JJ jet-ski image,'' he said. ''Not many people think the jet-ski industry hasn't improved since those days.''
Khun Nucha said he went to all of Patong's 12 jet-ski stations each day, reinforcing the message of consumer service and honesty.
A nationa law is being proposed that would ensure that jet-ski operators were obliged to behave at all times, he said.
He added that problems involving tourists were much greater these days in the motorcycle-hire and car-hire businesses, he said, simply because there were many more of them.
Governor Maitree was told that Phuket had 286 jet-skis, 170 at Patong, 40 at Bang Tao, 38 at Karon, 26 at Kamala and 12 at Naka island.
Only about 100 to 120 were in use at Patong regularly, Khun Nucha said, because the rest were usually out of the water for a variety of reasons.
Standard cost was 30 minutes for 1500 baht, he said, with fuel costing 500-600 baht and 200-300 baht usually going to the operator on the beach.
''Maintaining jet-skis is high cost because parts sometimes have to be ordered from Japan,'' he said.
Marine 5 really should make sure that all jet-skis had insurance, he said, which was not the case at present.
Arguments usually arise after jet-skis are damaged because the insurance celing of 50,000 baht sometimes does not cover costs and the user is almost always asked to pay at least 16,000 baht to cover the time the jet-ski will be out of the water.
Phuket's honorary consuls have suggested that jet-ski operators can afford to pay a higher insurance premium to cover all costs and obliterate the need for disputes.
This was not mentioned at today's meeting. However, Naka Island jet-ski owner Chaowalit Thaijalern suggested the establishment of a mediation team of volunteers who could be called in to a beach if there was a dispute.
There was not need to take arguments to local Phuket police stations for settlement, he said. Issues remain with teaching Russian and Chinese tourists the safety rules and speaking the same languages.
However, he said one of the new problems on Naka island was the tourist group guides, who either insisted on extra commission or charged their guests 2000 baht for a 1500 baht ride without disclosing it to anyone else.
The governor agreed that mostly, ''jet-ski rip-offs and cheating, that is in the past, not the present.'' He is to give the opening talk when jet-ski operators attend day-long seminars on August 29-30.
About 100 jet-ski operators are expected to attend the lectures on service standards, safety and other issues each day.
Jet-skis may be an issue once again when the governor meets with Phuket honorary consuls tomorrow.