Fly tipping with real flies – ‘Tourist’ trash angers Kanchanaburi villagers

Garbage truck drivers leaving their loads of trash on a local road instead of at the nearby dump has angered residents of Phra Chedi Sam Ong, a village in the tourist district of Sangkhla Buri, close to the Myanmar border in Kanchanaburi province.

Residents blame inadequate facilities in the popular destination of Wangka, nearby. Tourists are often blamed for excessive trash at more popular spots in Thailand.

When their complaints were ignored by the local authorities, residents took their case to the media. They told reporters on Thursday that mountains of garbage from local factories and Wangka municipality have been dumped on the road for months.

Resident Chan Thavornchatchawan said…

“Heaps of rotting garbage not only smell bad but attract vermin and block access to nearby plantations. The stench attracts armies of flies and upsets plantation workers.”

Reporters saw an estimated 100 tons or more of the factory and household waste dumped on the 3-metre-wide road over a distance of more than 400 metres. The trash included toxic waste, light bulbs, and chemical containers.

Garbage sorters who subsist on the dump said trucks could not get to the site during the rainy season. Many got stuck in the mud, so drivers just dumped the trash as close to the tip as they could.

Fly tipping with real flies - ‘Tourist’ trash angers Kanchanaburi villagers | News by Thaiger
Wangka is home to Wat Wang Wiwekaram, modelled on the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodh Gaya. It was relocated to the village in 1985

Most of the garbage comes from tourist destinations in Wangka, up to 25 tons each day.

Wangka is home to Wat Wang Wiwekaram, a Buddhist temple featuring a golden pagoda modelled on the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodh Gaya. It was built in 1953 by the Mon and Karen peoples and relocated to the village in 1985.

As Wangka has no rubbish processing facility of its own, it has used the site at Phra Chedi Sam Ong for more than 20 years. Another waste comes from factories in the area.

Chan said her requests for something to be done about the problem had gone unheard.

Thailand News

Jon Whitman

Jon Whitman is a seasoned journalist and author who has been living and working in Asia for more than two decades. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Jon has been at the forefront of some of the most important stories coming out of China in the past decade. After a long and successful career in East sia, Jon is now semi-retired and living in the Outer Hebrides. He continues to write and is an avid traveller and photographer, documenting his experiences across the world.

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