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Soi Bangla by night: security guards and touts can sometimes outnumber tourists

Brawl Raises Alarm About Patong Safety

Thursday, September 4, 2014
PHUKET: A wild, fist-swinging brawl among five Western men in Soi Bangla this week has sparked a call for better training and restraint among security guards at Patong's nightclubs and bars.

Tourists witnessed the melee just before midnight on Tuesday, a caller told Phuketwan, adding that bystanders were endangered as punch after punch was thrown.

''It was very dangerous for all the innocent people nearby,'' the caller said. ''People were being knocked into bars. The battle went on for more than five minutes.''

Police managed to calm down the participants and officers were coy to talk about the brawl yesterday. No charges were laid, and the argument was settled through mediation.

Region 8 Police volunteer Wal Brown, who is based in Patong, witnessed the fight and said it was alarming. ''These guys were trying to knock each other out with punches, and then Thai security staff joined in,'' he said.

''The security guards created more of a problem. We are having more of these kinds of fights and efforts have to be made to stop them from happening.''

Police did admit to Phuketwan that the battle among four of the Western men was over a woman. A fifth man unconnected with the others became embroiled in the fighting.

''There were some heavy hits landed and it was disturbing to see this kind of thing in Soi Bangla,'' Mr Brown said. Many touts and bouncers now stood around in the tourist walking street trying to attract customers, he said.

''The work of the police volunteers isn't getting any easier,'' Mr Brown added. ''What should happen is that these security men should exercise restraint and control the situation.

''Instead, all too often they appear to think the answer is to jump in and throw punches themselves.''

Several cases where young men have been killed with one punch late at night on the streets of Australian cities have alarmed authorities there.

Phuket attracts many people to train for Muay Thai or martial arts, but some appear to see merit in using their skills to attack rather than only in self-defence.

''I would suggest that now would be a good time for the Army to train the security people in Soi Bangla about how to keep the peace at all times,'' Mr Brown said.

The brawl took place near the Hollywood disco.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


Quality tourists you wanted, quality tourists you got!!!!!!

Posted by phuket madness on September 4, 2014 13:11


Security presence is a joke in Thailand, just like it was back in the 90's in the UK.
Proper Training is now law for night venues.

Posted by Tbs on September 4, 2014 13:26


Why would the army train security people?

They have enough things on their hands already, and this really should not be one of them.

Posted by stevenl on September 4, 2014 13:29


It could be again, some UFC heroes on holiday.

They definitely fall into category of quality tourists by their affluence.

But I would prefer not to have them somewhere nearby - there was reporting some time ago here how sensitive and irritable they are.

Posted by Sue on September 4, 2014 14:00


I thought a lot of these supposed bouncers were off duty soldiers and police.

Posted by rich on September 4, 2014 16:14

Editor Comment:

In normal times, Phuket has no soldiers on it, so they're hardly likely to be soldiers. Police? Not likely either.


Editor Comment:

In normal times, Phuket has no soldiers on it, so they're hardly likely to be soldiers. Police? Not likely either.

You are probably right. Aren't many of these joints owned by police?

Posted by cas on September 4, 2014 20:36

Editor Comment:

In Soi Bangla? Too expensive for police.


sorry ED. ur wrong twice here. there are special force police working as bouncers ( soldiers i am not sure and dont think so) in bangla also it is police owned bars. ... and u know what? its not to expensive for them...

Posted by frog on September 4, 2014 22:32


trash blanca

Posted by steve on September 4, 2014 22:37


Simple solution, in a word: tasers.

Posted by Smithy on September 5, 2014 00:13

Editor Comment:

Beam them up somewhere, Smithy?


I always thought that Military presence was a good idea in heavy tourist places such as Bangla and Walking street in Pattaya.
It works pretty good in places like Cabo, Mexico.

Posted by John on September 5, 2014 02:09


I know of two Thai police (one is a volunteer) that work as bouncers on Bangla. The rest don't seem to have any training or restraint when it comes to dealing with drunk, rowdy tourists. Roundhouse kicks and haymakers are the solution to a mouthy or disruptive tourists. But this is how it's done in Thailand, even by police, so short of removing the "Thainess", I am not sure anything can be done.

Posted by Nomadjoe on September 5, 2014 06:04


what does that mean exactly, "Westerners?"

Posted by bill on September 5, 2014 07:23

Editor Comment:

What it says, bill. People who look as though they are from the West. Or in economic terms, the North. Although, judging from their violent habits, probably due South of North.


It s common to see in bangla , 4 or 5 security guy fighting one farang , until the guy fall down on the ground in his blood. security mean something else.

Posted by Philipp on September 5, 2014 20:57


'Tough guy' farang still come to Thailand to flex tattoo-riddled muscles? NOOOOoooooo really?

How they often bite the dust though - fatal culture shock indeed.

Posted by farang888 on September 7, 2014 06:38

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