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Khai island, where the banana boat crashed into a speedboat

Speedboat 'Captains' Called to Account for Banana Boat Death

Monday, November 5, 2012
PHUKET: The ''captains'' of two speedboats involved in a crash that killed a Chinese tourist and injured others are being questioned about the incident today.

''If we find that there has been negligence on the part of those involved, we will cancel their licences or impose a fine,'' said the Chief of Phuket's Marine Office 5, Phuripat Theerakulpisut.

The ''captains'' were in charge when an inflated banana boat carrying the tourists, towed by one speedboat, was slung into the side of another speedboat close to shore at Khai island, a day-trip destination off Phuket, on Wednesday.

Kang Xiao Xue, 24, died later of her injuries at Phuket International Hospital in Phuket City, where two other tourists also required treatment.

Both ''captains'' are due to appear in Khun Phuripat's office this afternoon. It is believed they work for the same speedboat company.

A spokesperson at the Chinese Cosulate in Haad Yai said today there had been no direct communication with Marine Office 5 over the death but repeated appeals had been made to Phuket's Governors to ensure the safety of tourists.

''It is difficult to see how this needless death could be categorised as an accident,'' a spokesperson at the consulate said today.

''We have regularly asked Governors and senior officials to safeguard our citizens,'' the spokesperson said.

''Tour agents, resorts, local administrators . . . we want the entire Phuket tourism industry to protect all visitors.''

Online advice was being offered to Phuket visitors through the China Embassy's onilne site but they needed first-hand reminders on Phuket of the potential dangers.

''Swimming, speedboats, snorkelling, some of these activities are new to visitors,'' he said. ''They also need to be protected when travelling on buses or on motorcycles.''

Comments

Comments have been disabled for this article.

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Distance to shore for moving boats is 300 meters; so no excuse for the boat captains.
They do it to impress their customers and attract potential customers looking from the beach, the rodeo done by irresponsible Thai captains.

Posted by Whistle-Blower on November 5, 2012 13:23

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"If we find that there has been negligence", well I don't think it should take too much investigation into working that one out.
Then it just depends on whether it's a fine or cancelled licence. I know what I'd put my money on!

Posted by phuket madness on November 5, 2012 13:40

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PW earlier pointed out that these "faux-capitans" fled the scene of the crash. Charge em with something.

I know it is small spuds compared to a death, but I will put my money on a THB1000 fine and don't do it again, as per usual.

Posted by GiantFan on November 5, 2012 15:46

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As we have already been told they do not have any license the other option is a fine. Who thinks the young lady's parents will think that is a just punishment? I think the punishment needs to be far greater, a person died, if the Law needs changing change it. Sadly I think that until tourists stop coming, nothing will change. Sorry to be negative, but having seen so many things in the years here, that is how it is.

Posted by Happy Farang on November 5, 2012 16:15

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Well, I am pretty sure, the speed boat operator did not intentionally kill the tourist. So yes an accident. But that does not mean, that it just has to be a fine. At least two years on probation and a civil lawsuit against the operator and IF the total loss of safety procedures is the normal way also civil liability claims against the owner of the boats, against tour sellers, guides, hotels(?) (everyone knowing and profiting from the banana boat enterprise) would feel adequate from the facts stated in PW.

That would make clear, that if you make a profit from unsafe stuff and its handling, you are reliable in case of an accident thanks to the unsafe stuff or handling.

Is there a separate investigation by real police ongoing? Because just interviewing the operators... sad joke.

Posted by Lena on November 5, 2012 17:03

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Isnt a captain the person in command of a ship? If so, are these people really captains as it sounds only boats are involved which by definition is not a ship...

I might be wrong but it seems like more poor journalism from PhuketWan...

Posted by Joel M on November 5, 2012 18:02

Editor Comment:

You were right the first time, Joel M. You are wrong as usual.

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A person is dead and several injured. Boat was operating way closer to the beach than it should.

Criminal negligence charges need to be filed, the company named and their license cancelled.

Posted by Andrew on November 5, 2012 20:03


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