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Krabi

HM the King recognises Krabi ‘hero’ after 2015 mud rescue

The Thaiger & The Nation

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HM the King recognises Krabi ‘hero’ after 2015 mud rescue | The Thaiger

His Majesty the King has sent a gift and necessities to a local fisherman whose rescue of two foreign birdwatchers stuck in mud in 2015 went viral on social media.

Captain Khumsup Iamsri, an officer attached to the King’s royal villa, represented the King to visit 47 year old Chat Ubonjinda at his house on Khu Muang road in Tambon Pak Nam of Muang district.

Read the original Thaiger report HERE.

On October 16, 2015, Chat was fishing in Krabi River when he spotted a Norwegian couple stuck in thigh-high mud and saved them by letting them step on him to get out. Once they were safe, he got in his boat and left.

Someone took a video of the rescue and posted it online, resulting in a search to find the hero. Chat received widespread praise at the time with netizens describing him as a ‘hero’.

Chat and his family said they felt very appreciative of the King’s kindness.

 



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Krabi

Investigation into mine explosion on a Phang Nga Bay bird’s-nest concession island

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Investigation into mine explosion on a Phang Nga Bay bird’s-nest concession island | The Thaiger
by Sittichai Sikhawat 

Police have launched an investigation into an explosion at a bird’s-nest concession area in Phang Nga bay, where one man was killed and another injured on Monday night. The island is Koh Lao Dua, six kilometres north of Koh Yao Noi.

Story HERE (one man has died since The Thaiger story).

25 year old Boodrod Thongdee died following the blast, while 35 year old Somchai Thongdee was injured.

Somkid Thongdee, who was with the two victims at the time, survived the explosion without injury. He maintains that they had entered the area to collect wild orchids. One of the men stepped on a mine planted along the beach.

A local community leader, however, is raising doubts about their claim, saying that locals had long known that the concession area was out of bounds.

(Do tour operators and inquisitive tourists know about the locations? Are there clear and obvious warning signs along the beaches?)

“Some measures have been used to deter thieves,” the community leader said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The day after the blast police found more mines planted in the concession area.

One of them was apparently similar to a device that police had seized from bird’s-nest watchers last year.

SOURCE: The Nation

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Two injured after stepping on suspected mines at a Krabi island

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Two injured after stepping on suspected mines at a Krabi island | The Thaiger

Two Thai men have sustained serious injuries after stepping on a mine at an island near Ao Nang, Krabi.

The Ao Nang Police were notified about the two men being injured from the incident in Ao Nang at 6pm last night.

35 year old Somchaai Longj sustained injuries on his legs, shoulder and a broken leg from the explosion and was taken to Krabi Hospital. The other injured person was 25 year old Boonrod Thongdee who was taken to a hospital in Phang Nga.

38 year old Somkid Tongdee says that he was heading from Koh Mak in Phang Nga Bay with two others friends to an island near Ao Nang in Krabi to collect wild orchids near a cave.

“Boonrod stepped on something in the ground before we heard the sound of an explosion.”

At this stage police speculate that the bomb might belong to a company who received a concession to produce and farm bird nets. They speculate they might have placed the mines to prevent and deter thieves.

The Thaiger has sought comment from provincial police about the possible presence of live mines on a Krabi island.

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Bangkok

TAT expects 2.3 million tourists for this year’s Songkran

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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TAT expects 2.3 million tourists for this year’s Songkran | The Thaiger

The Tourism Authority of Thailand is expecting more than 2.3 million local and foreign tourists will join the various Songkran celebrations this year. They say that should generate 20 billion baht+ in revenue for tourism and tourism-related services.

TAT’s Governor Yuthasak Supasorn says 300,000 international arrivals are expected to celebrate the five day festival starting April 12, along with two million locals who will travel to celebrate Songkran this year. Songkran falling on a weekend this year will also bolster local tourism numbers.

The number of Songkran-specific visitors is up this year, partly because of the growing popularity of the festival internationally and the government extending the holiday to five days this year, now starting on April 12 (although ‘Songkran, the Thai New Year, is actually on April 13).

Songkran festival extended HERE.

He admits that the bad publicity about the poor air quality in the northern regions is a problem, especially around Chiang Mai which has become a big international visitor favorite over recent yers.

Chiang Mai is one of nine provinces in the North struggling with smoke haze, mostly because of open-air burning of farm waste and rubbish, and localised bush fires. The heavy smog has caused temporary suspension of flights between Chiang Mai and Mae Hong Son although flights into Chiang Mai have been unaffected so far.

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