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


A tourist rides a banana boat similar to the one in the fatal crash

Phuket Speedboat Driver Suspended, Fined After Tourist's Death

Thursday, November 8, 2012
PHUKET: The driver of a speedboat involved in the death of a Chinese tourist has been suspended for six months, the Chief of Phuket's Marine Office 5, Phuripat Theerakulpisut, said today.

The man has also been fined 15,000 baht.

''It's the most strict penalty imposed in my time on Phuket,'' Khun Phuripat said. ''The man will be required to go through a course before regaining his permission to work as a speedboat captain.''

Tourist Kang Xiao Xue, 24, who was holidaying with her husband, died of injuries at Phuket International Hospital in Phuket City on November 1.

Two other tourists were also admitted for treatment for injuries after the crash the previous day at Khai island, a popular day trip destination off Phuket.

It is believed the banana boat, being pulled by one speedboat, was slung into the side of another speedboat close to the shore.

Safety rules governing the movements of speedboats are not always followed in and around the Phuket region.

A French tourist was killed earlier this year off Phi Phi, another holiday island a short distance from Phuket, when struck by the propeller of a passing boat.


Comments have been disabled for this article.


"suspended for six months" "fined 15,000 baht' "most strict penalty imposed "'' 'The man will be required to go through a course before regaining his permission to work as a speedboat captain.''


Life it's cheap very Cheap here!!! happy to living Thailand in January 2013 , after 4 years spend, i guess its already to much,i won't miss Thailand and Thai won't miss me either. (R-I-P )

Posted by dede on November 8, 2012 10:15


1 Month salary and 6 month suspension for killing someone through your negligence. The punishment sure fits the crime, huh ?

I hope the family of the victim pursues a case so that REAL consequences will follow and hopefully work as a deterrent to prevent further needless and completely avoidable loss of life and injury.

When safety regulations are by and large ignored by the authorities and even lethal accidents have no tangible consequences it's little wonder people keep losing their lives in speed-boat related accidents on and off Phuket.

A fundamental change in the approach to Marine related safety regulation enforcement is where it all has to start. Speed boat operators ignore these rules because they can.

Posted by Andrew on November 8, 2012 10:19


And once again I am left speechless! Kata beach speed boat "captains" tow customers on the parachutes and there is no one else in the boat looking out for jet ski traffic, swimmers etc..

Posted by Vfaye on November 8, 2012 10:22


Are You Kidding Me...?

Posted by Ted Davis on November 8, 2012 10:30


Hopefully this "most strict penalty imposed" for an unjustifiable death will create a much bigger backlash from China and the rest of the world when the news gets out. It's beyond belief.

Posted by Pete on November 8, 2012 10:32


A picture of the guy available? Only to make sure, that he isn't driving another route, now?

Posted by Anonymous on November 8, 2012 11:35


Are the other captains going to do the same course as well?. (the ones who hasn't got the license that is) Or do we have to wait for the next accident to happen before that will be required?

Posted by Nick on November 8, 2012 12:10

Editor Comment:

Passing the course is a regular obligation for all speedboat ''captains,'' we are told. This man will be obliged to do it for a second time.


For those whinging about the sentence, put it into a local perspective, not an international one. In comparison to a lot of other fines levied in Phuket this one IS quite severe. Just be grateful he has been punished for a change.

Posted by Mister Ree on November 8, 2012 13:39


Don't complain then if swedish newspapers say that Phuket is dangerous, they put in an international perspective. And if Phuket wants swedish tourists back must put its rules in an international perspective.

Simple. Supply and demand.

Posted by Claudio on November 8, 2012 14:30


I hope the police will file a criminal negligence or grievous harm suit against these speed boat guys...its just to ridiculous that you can kill someone through yr carelessness, and just get suspended for a few months and pay 15,000.= Wow!

Posted by Ian on November 8, 2012 15:12


Well then, justice was done. Sort of. The victim's relatives will think of it as a joke, but as I do not know about the circumstances for this tragic (stupid) accident, I like the part, where this operator is not allowed to work the whole high season. My expectations were pretty low, so good work from Khun Phuripat. The family now has a case and should press charges for wrongful death with the local police.

Thanks for keeping an eye on this case, Phuketwan, you will be desperately missed in 2013. My pain is growing...

Posted by Lena on November 8, 2012 16:47


Did the Marine Director not tell the media last week, that speedboat captains does not need a license in Phuket ?
So how can he get his license back when he never had needed one ??

Posted by karsten on November 8, 2012 17:56

Editor Comment:

Speedboat ''captains'' must undergo a health check and a test similar to a driver's licence test to earn what amounts to a certificate of registration. ''Captain'' is the term used to describe the person in charge of a boat, although qualification requirements differ between a speedboat and a tanker.


I think most posters here are missing the point. The captain is (no pun intended) the meat in the sandwich. It is the owner of the boat that sets the standards, and decides if he wants to employ an observer as well as a captain. It is also the owner that determines the safety and maintenance of the boats, and it is the owner who will decide what weather speed boats will go out in. The owner of course, is seldom on the boat. In many Western countries the captain would be expected to stand up to the owner if he/she feels conditions aren't good enough. That will never happen in Thailand, the captain does not have the power or social position to stand up to the owner. The captain may as well just walk away from the job. This does not excuse what happened, just be careful not to blame only one person, when many are at fault. Including local authorities. Remember the Russian guy that got run over, no observer on that boat either, and no consequences, as I recall.

Posted by Mark on November 8, 2012 21:44

Thursday July 18, 2024
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


Facebook Twitter