Phuket officials swoop on encroaching beach beds, umbrellas, and restaurants

Beach beds, umbrellas, and restaurants found encroaching on Phuket beach, photo by The Phuket Express.

Phuket officials swooped on encroaching beach beds, umbrellas, and restaurants on a beach in the Thalang district yesterday. A team of officials led by Thalang District Chief Bancha Tanuin inspected Lay Phang Beach in Cherng Talay.

The officials asked operators to remove beach beds and umbrellas from the beach. Even though many tourists enjoy these things, authorities say they lead to a ‘domino effect,’ with more venues trying to encroach. Therefore, as a general rule, these materials are prohibited.

Meanwhile, officials filed reports to Cherng Talay Police Station against three restaurant operators for encroaching on a public area on the beach road nearby.

As public beaches are considered public land, private businesses encroaching on them are strictly prohibited, unless special permission is granted.

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Bancha said that officials have checked local beaches for encroachment at least once.

This news comes after the Royal Thai Navy busted a Phuket umbrella operator for encroaching on a beach on March 7. The incident happened on Koh Racha Yai, an island off southern Phuket.

The navy inspected the island and found the operator on Ao Pratok Beach. Twenty sets of umbrellas were seized, and the operator was arrested and brought to Chalong Police Station for further legal proceedings.

In January, officials removed a fence from Kamala Beach following several complaints that the fence encroached upon the beach. The business accused of encroaching on the beach was a beach bed operator.

In November last year, police removed illegal food and drink venues from another Thalang shoreline, Layan Beach. The police found three venues on the beach that were providing food and drinks, as well as chairs, sunbeds, and umbrellas. The police confiscated these items.

Eviction notices for the Layan Beach structures were served in 2017 when the Supreme Court ruled that occupiers were illegally encroaching on state land. Several “final warnings” were issued, with the last eviction notice delivered on September 12.

Crime NewsPhuket News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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