PATONG, PHUKET: In a move sure to win the hearts of foreigners, Patong’s new top police officer says he’ll end the longstanding practice of levying higher traffic fines against tourists and other foreigners than are levied against Thais.
Kathu Police Superintendent Arayapan Pukbuakao, who took over from Col Grissak Songmoonnark last month, said traffic fines in Patong were ‘very high’.
“Before, these were assessed differently depending on whether the violator was Thai or foreign,” he said. “I will look into that and make sure the same fines are levied on everybody.”
Col Arayapan also pledged to end Patong’s infamous one-way traffic system, “which not only confuses people but is also in violation of current Thai traffic laws.”
The superintendent supports Phuket Governor Wichai Phraisa-ngop’s proposal to make Patong a special entertainment zone in which venues can stay open until very late.
“Otherwise they [tourists] will have no place to go after the bars close and will continue drinking on the beach or along roadsides, which is not good,” he said.
Col Arayapan said he also backs Gov Wichai’s plan to have meters fitted to tuk-tuks. “It could happen, but it won’t be easy,” he said.
For the full interview, see the March 6 edition of the Phuket Gazette, still available in our digital archives.
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