PHUKET: The Phuket Provincial Administration Organization, (OrBorJor), is to allocate 3 million baht to providing lifeguards on beaches during the monsoon season, it was announced today. Harnchai Jantarachote, president of the OrBorJor’s Tourism Committee, told the Gazette that statistics compiled by the National Institute of Development Administration (NIDA) reveal that about 30 people – Thais and foreigners – drowned last year in Phuket. The budget will pay for three lifeguard points on Patong breach, two on Karon beach and one on Kata beach. Three lifeguards will be posted at each point, equipped with a jet-ski, oxygen tanks, first-aid kit, binoculars and other equipment to help save people’s lives. “The OrBorJor plans to implement the program just for the monsoon season, or until October of this year,” K. Harnchai said. This, he explained, is because spending must be planned and put in the budget at least a year in advance. The lifeguard plan is too new to have been included in this year’s budget. “Next year the committee will try to organize budget for the whole year. We also hope to have permanent towers for the lifeguards next year, so they will be able to see the swimmers better,” K. Harnchai said.
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