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B10,000 reward for sea dumping tip-offs, says marine chief

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PHUKET: The Phuket Marine Office has vowed to punish anyone caught dumping waste or rubbish into Phuket’s waters and reward those who provide tip-offs leading to arrests.

Phuripat Theerakulpisut, chief of the Phuket Marine Office, signed off on a warning letter that reiterated that officers will strictly enforce the law. Those caught violating the law face up to six months imprisonment, a fine of up to 10,000 baht or both. Harsher penalties, which include up to three years imprisonment, a fine of up to 60,000 baht or both, are reserved for those caught releasing chemicals or hazardous waste.

“Anyone who gives us a tip-off that leads to an arrest, will be given a 10,000 baht reward,” said Mr Phuripat.

The strict enforcement comes fast on the heels of a major clean up operation that saw divers remove more than 400 kilograms of trash from a catchment area between Kata and Karon Bay on Monday (story here).

“About 80 per cent of the trash was removed from the sea on Monday. We will clean up the rest on December 3 as planned,” said Phuket Governor Chamroen Tipayapongtada. “I understand that this particular trash was washed up from somewhere else due to the currents. Nonetheless, we must put an end to sea dumping, and must hold those responsible accountable.”

Governor Chamroen confirmed that he personally would call on all boat operators to once again review the rules on sea dumping.

“Everyone must take part in the preservation of our environment and we must find long-term solutions to help keep Phuket beautiful,” Gov Chamroen added.

To call in tip-offs, contact the Phuket Marine Office at 076-391 174 or the Marine Office Region 5 at 076-393 572.

— Chutharat Plerin

 

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