PATONG: Vice-Governor Worapot Ratthasima on Tuesday was appointed chairman of a committee charged with cleaning up Patong Beach and ensuring that beach operators are regulated.
Committee member and Patong Municipality Chief Administrative Officer Poonsak Naksena said that the known 55 renters of beach chairs and umbrellas have until by February 24 to tidy up the layout of their 2,300-odd umbrellas and beach chairs so that the beach can be cleared of people quickly in case of another tsunami.
In addition, by February 24, each beach chair and umbrella renter, as well as every masseuse working on the beach, must register with Patong Municipality and obtain a license.
Patong Municipality will allocate a zone for each to operate within, and the license will have to be renewed each year.
Kathu Police Superintendent Pol Lt Col Teeraphol Thipjaroen said, “We are having difficulty controlling the problems at Patong Beach because we cannot continually check the beach, and the operators move back each time after we check.”
Col Teeraphol said that the committee had received input from related stakeholders, and he expected the beach operators to comply now that one person – V/Gov Worapot – is responsible for keeping the beach in order.
“We should also register and limit the number of tuk-tuk drivers in Patong and give them uniforms. Furthermore, I could lecture the drivers on ethical behavior,” he added.
Phuket Marine Office Chief Surin Theerakulpisut said, “My part in making Patong more orderly is to set up restricted areas for riding jet-skis, and for loading and unloading them from trailers, in order to avert accidents.”
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