Tourism News

Tourism News Phuketwan Tourism News
facebook recommendations


Sign up now for our News Alert emails and the latest breaking news plus new features.

Click to subscribe

Existing subscribers can unsubscribe here


Travellers make the most of an indefinite holdup in a huge Phuket jam today

UPDATE Phuket Paralysed: Mob Causes Record Traffic Jam, Tourists Miss Flights, Police Powerless to Act

Wednesday, April 23, 2014
UPDATING All Day, Every Day

A MOB blocking Phuket's major artery was continuing their protest at 10pm tonight. At least one pilot, a Russian man, was caught up in traffic and unable to reach his plane. Phuket airport must have been chaotic - but nobody could get through to find out. Rain began to fall about 9pm, the best hope for dispersing the crowd.
Protesters said police beat up at least 10 innocent local youths before arresting the twins. Four officers are being transferred as a placatory move.

Original Report

PHUKET: One of the largest traffic jams ever on Phuket shut off the island from the mainland, caused scores of passengers to miss flights and demonstrated the lawlessness of Phuket today.

By 7pm traffic blocked Phuket's main road to unprecedented levels, with Phuket International Airport sending officials to try to negotiate a pathway for travellers who were bound to miss flights overseas and to Bangkok.

The protest was over a rape that took place on Saturday night in northern Phuket. Seventeen-year-old twin boys confessed to raping a 25-year-old woman who was five months pregnant.

When neighbors heard police planned a reenactment this afternoon, they turned out in vast numbers. But when police cancelled the reenactment, the crowds blocked Phuket's main road in both directions.

By 7pm Thepkasattri road, the island's lifeblood artery, was blocked from Sarasin Bridge down as far as the Thalang police station, a distance approaching 20 kilometres.

Tourists were unable to make their way to the airport from Patong and the west coast or Phuket City, or from Phang Nga, north of Phuket.

A tourist caught in traffic coming to Phuket with a three-year-old daughter growing increasingly distressed wrote to Phuketwan from his trapped vehicle: ''I doubt that these people know that the food on their table is coming from tourists visiting their island.

''Unfortunately we booked our hotel for a nonrefundable one week other wise I'll turn my back and leave.''

Hundreds of visitors would tonight be feeling the same way. Will this be the incident that finally triggers a complete makeover for Phuket? We doubt it.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Would be interesting what the people are protesting about:
Are those people protesting that police, this time, did their job and arrested the suspects? Or are they protesting about our social problems?

A sad and shocking story indeed. Poor woman...

Posted by Mr. K on April 23, 2014 19:35

Editor Comment:

Anger manifests in ugly ways. The protesters say they wanted an apology from the twins.


After 11 hours drive we got stock in this traffic.
My 3 years old daughter is crying she wants to use the toilet, we both are feeling extremely tired...OMG why the police on the phuket check point are not informing people not to enter the city?

Posted by samer k. on April 23, 2014 19:57

Editor Comment:

There is a statue of a saluting policeman at the checkpoint who can probably help as much as anyone. The attitude on Phuket is to let these things happen, I am afraid. Sorry for your anxiety and this needless delay.


So mob rule works. Once again the police cannot police the people. I say get the bl--dy army in to help with quelling these mob tactics. Now we all know who owns the island, certainly not the "trained" police force. Or do we just have to accept the mai pen rai feelings.

Posted by Ineptocracy on April 23, 2014 20:14

Editor Comment:

Anyone with an ounce of knowledge of the way people react could have predicted there would be some kind of reaction. Perhaps not this big a reaction, but a reaction. It's a pity there is no learning from past experiences.


Is the road clear now as family have flights to catch tomorrow morning?

Yet another example of the lawlessness & lack of respect for the police on this island. No matter how heinous the crime, justice must serve its course.

Posted by Logic on April 23, 2014 20:17


Any update?
We did not move since more than one hour and a half. And we are only 2k from the phucket check point.
Unfortunately we passed the first U turn so we have no choice than to wait.

Posted by samer k. on April 23, 2014 20:29

Editor Comment:

As far as we can tell, the blockade is continuing. You are in Phang Nga, not yet on Phuket?


I don't know where we are but we got stuck 2 min after the phucket check point.

Posted by samer k. on April 23, 2014 20:33


Another nail in the tourism coffin, If i missed my flight i would sadly never come back, and its my 36th visit soon, I do feel they could have let tourists heading to the Airport through, as its not their issue, and to punish them will end up in loss of tourists

Posted by Gregg P Cornell on April 23, 2014 20:44


I doubt that this people know that the food on their table is coming from tourists visiting their island.
Unfortunately we booked our hotel for a nonrefundable 1 week other wise I'll turn my back and leave.

Posted by samer k. on April 23, 2014 21:01


Typical. Inconvenience and penalise innocent people while the real crooks are free to rake in the cash and run the show with zero foresight, minimal effort or qualification.

Posted by gee on April 23, 2014 21:40


Only thing there sorry about is being caught clearly planned and premeditated crime, a lynch mob baying for blood I could understand but all this for a insincere sorry from the perpetrators wont gain much, no surprise re enactment cancelled police don't need a audience of 5 thousand tramping about a crime scene destroying any forensic evidence or the perpetrators attacked.

Posted by slickmelb on April 23, 2014 21:53

Editor Comment:

And also, so we've learned, the bashing of 10 innocent youths by police, setting a great example to the mob.


After 4 hours getting of waiting I gave up and left my car in the middle of the road, we took a pickup and went to holiday inn In Mai khao.
I'll keep checking your website to know when to head back to the car.

Posted by samer k. on April 23, 2014 23:16


Just got back to my hotel after 5 hours in the traffic jam. Had to walk for kilometres and hitch a ride. Four of my friends remain in our van probably overnight. Whilst I do not condone the terrible crime committed, the methodology used by the protesters of inconveniencing thousands of innocent people is selfish and small minded. Will never return to Thailand.

Posted by Warrick on April 23, 2014 23:43


To all you moaning farang you make me sick!! oh no u miss a flight? you miss getting home early??? i hope you all rot in hell!! how would you feel if this happened to your daughter??? you people are why i left england!!! you care nothing for anyone but yourselves!

Posted by mr wolf on April 24, 2014 02:10


Sorry but i just read again all the comments by idiot farangs who care nothing about what has happened and just caught up in their own little worries i feel very ashamed to be a farang at the moment if i am to be compared to these low class idiots!i hope not one of them ever comes back to Thailand again as it is people like this who are only interested in abusing Thailand and thinking they are better than Thai's, which they obviously are NOT

Posted by mr wolf on April 24, 2014 02:18


mr wolf: why so antagonistic? Maybe if you missed a flight yourself then you would be a moaner too. These commenters are the reason you left England? Are you serious or just another idiot? Look at another article where many expressed their shock, horror and sympathy for the victim. I'm surprised the editor published such trash.

Posted by Pete on April 24, 2014 05:49


@wolf - the rantings of a moron i see. Everryone here feels sympathy for the young lady who was brutally assaulted and raped. I see no one saying otherwise. But what people are objecting to is vigilante groups blockading roads - lack of police enforcement to prevent this and general lawlessness on this island. and yes people were very inconvenienced last night. Another stain on Phuket as tourists leave. There last impression of Phuket - but hey you left England for the lawlessness right?

Posted by Ciaran on April 24, 2014 08:10


Got caught up in this for 7 hours. Finally got to out hotel at 2am. Horrendous. No doubt a horrific crime and one can see why locals would feel moved to protest but how on earth has their action benefitted anyone? It was reckless and dangerous disrupting the lives of thousands of locals and tourists who were helplessly stranded with limited food and water. I will never ever come back to Thailand. This sort of lawless mob rule has no place in a civilised society and demonstrates just how close to total and utter chaos this island sits at the best of times.

Posted by Anonymous on April 24, 2014 09:34

Sunday November 28, 2021
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


Facebook Twitter