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B17m for Andaman Sea Rescue



B17m for Andaman Sea Rescue | Thaiger

PHUKET: The Andaman Sea Rescue Service (ASRS) has received a budget of more than 17 million baht to spend on new lifesaving equipment, though officials don’t expect to receive the new gear until the third quarter of this year.

The ASRS carries out sea rescues off the coasts of five of Thailand’s six Andaman provinces: Phuket, Krabi, Phang Nga, Ranong and Trang.

The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM), which is providing the funding, hopes the new equipment will relieve pressure on the overstretched ASRS, boosting tourist confidence in the process.

The equipment will arrive in the form of three ‘rescue packages’ comprising a speedboat, life raft and communications and medical equipment.

Phuket will receive one package. A second will go to Krabi. The third will be stored at the DDPM- Phuket headquarters for deployment as needed in any of the five provinces.

The DDPM will put the contract out to tender among qualified suppliers.

More than 50 ASRS volunteers are also set to undergo a 45-day training program headed by the Royal Thai Navy and Marine Police.

DDPM-Phuket chief Udomporn Karn said the Krabi rescue package would be based at Ao Nang.

Phuket’s package will likely be based in Chalong Bay, he added.

“I’m trying to get the equipment for the third quarter of this year,” he said.

The DDPM is hoping to secure more money to buy rescue packages for Ranong, Trang and Phang Nga provinces as well, he said.

For our previous story, click here.

— Atchaa Khamlo


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