PHUKET: It's amazing how intelligent people still suggest that the simple solution to Phuket's jet-ski problem is to ban them all.
These same people never offer a single idea on how a ban is going to be achieved. How, for example, the people who own the jet-skis or have jet-ski related jobs are going to react.
Simple solutions are for the simple-minded. When it comes to jet-skis on Phuket, it's too late to consider a total ban.
The concept of a gradual phase-out, leading to their eventual obliteration after seven years, was a good idea when proposed in 2003.
However, Phuket's authorities failed to keep their promises.
The present team in charge of Phuket cannot even keep jet-skis off beaches where they are not supposed to be, as visitors to Surin and Laem Singh soon discover.
We agree that jet-skis shouldn't be there. But we're not so simple-minded as to suggest they could and should be banned without a sensible strategy.
Nor would we argue that the injuries and the hassles caused by jet-skis are caused by the operators. In most cases, the tourists are to blame for their own misfortunes.
Anyone seriously worried about the health and welfare of tourists on Phuket should first be advocating prevention of needless drownings and motorcycle crashes.
These are the main reasons why too many tourists are killed and maimed on Phuket.
Next month, the British Embassy is backing a Coastal Water Safety Summit, aimed at achieving a Safer Phuket.
Phuketwan supports the summit and hopes that, as well as dealing with the obvious need to cut swimming deaths on the beaches and on snorkelling day-trips, the talk also turns to jet-skis.
With Phuket's Marine 5 officials unable or unwilling to enforce standards among jet-ski operators, it's time for the creation of an independent Phuket Beach Authority to be seriously considered.
And if Thai law can be bent on Phuket to allow jet-skis to operate as they do, despite regulations banning their use, then Thai law can be bent to allow the the Royal Thai Navy to patrol the beaches.
Novel and radical solutions are required to Phuket's problems, not the resurrection of failed ideas, or simple-minded thinking.