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41 dead. Hopes fade for remaining 15 missing.

The Thaiger

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Rescuers are aiming to have a go at raising the wreck of ‘Phoenix’ today.

Divers, mostly volunteers, have been confronted with a scene of horror as they defended 47 metres off the coast of Koh Hei into the wreckage of ‘Phoenix’. They reported seeing mothers still holding they babies, bodies suspended in the lower lounge are of the sunken boat.

At least 41 people are now confirmed as dead. 15 are still missing with hopes fading that any more survivors will be found.

Phuket’s professional diving contingent was thin on the ground on Friday morning when the call went out for help in a frantic search for survivors from the Thursday evening disaster. But many of the island’s professionals were already in Chiang Rai, helping in the international rescue attempt at the Tham Luang caves.

One local diver who assisted with the recovery mission, who asked not to be named, says “the morning after the event a call went out on the expat diving groups for volunteers to help recover bodies, especially those with technical diving experience (recreational divers, even instructors cannot and do not typically dive below 40 metres, and the wreck sits at 47 metres).”

“The volunteers were all expats with very mixed backgrounds and nationalities, ages. The depth made the operation more difficult, because it requires divers with spefic skills and experience – overhead environments and more complicated diving.”

Late yesterday afternoon the underwater search was stopped. The Royal Thai Navy say that they are taking over the remaining search and retrieval activities. Rear Admiral Charoenphone Khumrasee is reported in AFP saying that “the rest of the bodies would surface naturally.”

48 passenger, the crew and the boat’s captain, were able to get off the boat before it sank on Thursday night. The captain of the Phoenix and also the Serenata (the other boat that sank, but with no casualties), have already been charged with “negligence leading to damages, injury and death” as the investigation begins.

If you have story ideas, a restaurant to review, an event to cover or an issue to discuss, contact The Thaiger editorial staff.

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Hua Hin

TAT criticises operators of suspended Pattaya-Hua Hin ferry

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The Tourism Authority of Thailand is criticising the operator of the Pattaya-Hua Hin ferry service over the suspension of boat trips on the grounds that it is low season and too few passengers.

The Prachuap Khiri Khan Harbour Office announced this morning that the Royal Passenger Line would suspend the service from September 20 to October 31 and would resume services on November 1.


However, Orasa Avudhkhom, director of the Prachuap Khiri Khan Office of TAT, says that the low season should not be a reason for suspending services. She said boat services should only be suspended if the sea was too rough or weather conditions were hazardous.

She said the suspension of services will affect tourism in Hua Hin. The ferry route concessionaire should have used marketing campaigns during the low season to attract business, instead of suspending the services, she said.

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Bangkok

Man arrested for alleged attempted rape of nine year old girl

The Thaiger & The Nation

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by Kornkamon Aksorndech and Supachai Phetchthewee

Police have arrested a motorcycle taxi driver for allegedly luring a nine year old girl into a Bangkok temple toilet yesterday in an attempt to rape her.

The alleged incident took place at 5pm at the Wat Yoo Dee Bumrungtham (Wat Or Ngern) toilet in the Saimai district.

The alleged assault was stopped when the girl screamed for help and a monk, armed with a metal bar, managed to rescue the young girl as her attacker fled.

Based on the description they gave, police questioned the accused man who had been previously arrested for marijuana possession. He gave his name as Ae, although he carried no ID.

Ae, aged in his 40s, reportedly told police that the girl hailed his motorcycle taxi to go to her mother's house in Sukha Pibal 5 area and on the way he made a stop to use the toilet.

He allegedly told the girl to go into the toilet and then ...
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Phuket

Russian tourist stung by ‘fire jellyfish’ at Patong Beach

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PHOTOS: Patong Lifeguards / Newshawk Phuket

A female Russian tourist has sustained a painful sting on her leg from a ‘fire jellyfish’ at Patong beach today (September 20).

Patong lifeguards are warning of jellyfish known locally as the ‘fire jellyfish’ at Patong Beach.

Fire Jellyfish or Morbakka fenneri can be discovered in tropical watersa. The physical appearance of this jellyfish is slightly larger than most jellyfish. The fire jellyfish can be seen from their pink coloured body, four inch body length and their bell is two-inches in diameter. Their stings are also painful but no worse than other jellyfish.

Patong lifeguards say, “We have provided first aid to a the Russian lady who refused to go to a hospital. If you are stung by one, pouring sea water or vinegar on the affected area can help relieve some of  the pain. Please don’t use fresh water and don’t scratch.”

"Many tourists sustai...
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