A new edict by Phuket Governor Nisit Jansomwong to ensure safety at sea off Phuket has encouraged Marine Office 5 to warn that small boat ''captains'' caught going out will lose their licenses.
However, a Phuketwan reporter at Phuket's Chalong Pier yesterday saw tourists boarding speedboats as usual for day-trip destinations, despite the new emphasis putting safety ahead of money.
Today, waves of between three and four metres, winds of up to 36 kph and heavy rain over 80 percent of Phuket are forecast under dismal grey skies.
Authorities on Phuket are expected to become more active in enforcing the new rule sometime soon.
Even fishery operators in Krabi have been forced to dock their boats by strong waves as the weather bureau has warned Thailand's South and East of stormy conditions until next week, NNT reports.
Larger vessels are permitted to continue operating with craft under nine metres banned from the Andaman but still permitted to voyage to Koh Lon and Koh Hey, but not to Racha or Phi Phi.
Phang Nga Bay is considered still safe for travel.
Phuket beaches are unsafe for swimmers and tourists are advised to stick to resort pools or go shopping.
NNT adds that authorities from Nopparat Thara Beach-Phi Phi Islands National Park in Krabi have put up red flags along Ao Nang Beach and Nopparat Thara Beach in an attempt to caution locals and tourists.
The weather is expected to improve from July 13.