Phuket Lifeguard Club signs B22mn contract ahead of monsoon season

PHUKET: The Phuket Lifeguard Club (PLC) renewed its contract last month, extending the island’s life-saving services through the southwest monsoon season, when the waters are most tempestuous.

PLC President Prathaiyut Chuayuan told the Phuket Gazette that the 22-million-baht contract with the Phuket Provincial Administrative Organization (PPAO) will end in 10 months, on January 20 next year.

“The budget for our 38 stations is for the same amount as last year,” Mr Prathaiyut said.

In previous years, negotiations between the PPAO and the PLC left Phuket’s popular tourist beaches without lifeguards as the southwest monsoon season stirred up deadly rip tides.

During last year’s southwest monsoon season, one tourist died at Nai Harn Beach as the two sides attempted to sort out the contract (story here).

Mr Prathaiyut repeated his plea for tourists to obey red-flag warnings at beaches, as they are often marked due to particularly strong rip tides.

Last week, a woman playing with friends in one meter of water in a red-flagged zone was swept out to sea. Her unconscious body was recovered by lifeguards about ten minutes later. She later succumbed to her injuries (story here).

“Please understand that we have only two or three staff members to look after tourists at each of our stations. The red flags are placed where it is dangerous to swim. Do not swim in these areas. You may not be able to get away from the rip currents,” Mr Prathaiyut said. “And please, don’t ignore lifeguards, as they are doing their best to ensure your safety.”

— Chutharat Plerin

Phuket News
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