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Tourists leaving Phuket on speedboats yesterday despite weather warnings

Phuket Tourist Speedboats Defy Weather Warnings. Too Dangerous? Too Bad.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015
PHUKET: Small boats are banned from venturing out today off Phuket, Krabi and Phang Nga with more monsoon storms predicted through this week - but the dangers are being ignored by some greedy tour operators.

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.

Comments

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Didn't expect anything else from the boat captains. Who cares about human lives here any way? And the rules/laws?
As long as the money rolls in there's nothing as "safety" for anyone.

Posted by nicky on July 7, 2015 07:39

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Excellent to see this reported on. Let's see if the Marine Office delivers on its threats. I hope they do. Rules need to be enforced and responsibility apportioned.

Posted by Duncan on July 7, 2015 08:42

Editor Comment:

Those speedboats seem from a distance to be 9.1 metres.

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Basing on the power of engines, it doesn't look like they departed to Koh Hey or Koh Lon.

There is a question whether MO5 announcement to the ores is backed by a general administrative act in force that would be mandatory to boat owners, I quite doubt it as it should be "published" to be create obligation of boat owners to comply - surely it could be "published" on board at Chalong pier, but somehow doubt it and thus mandatory nature of it - looks more like a suggestion.

The governor surely have no powers at all to issues such orders, and also no powers to influence MO5 in any aspect as MO5 is part of Transport ministry and accountable only to it; the Governor executes his powers to big extent through control over Phuket budget and its apportions, but MO5 budget is not under his control, so they have no incentive to comply with any Governor's suggestion, right or wrong one, if they don't wish to.

Posted by Sue on July 7, 2015 09:09

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My heads turning faster than an engine what's sue saying.

It is dangerous out there but the same rules for getting a driving licence are also. Same for getting captains license I have both

Posted by Michael on July 7, 2015 11:35

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no real surprise then, money talks loudly on Phuket, precedent is 2 years for 2 lives lost, so who cares, maybe you don't get caught, Despite what ED thinks or says, nothing changes here and never will with Thai mentality the way it is, and changing that will take generations

Posted by Shwe on July 7, 2015 15:59


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