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Phuket ‘hashers’ mourn three fallen comrades

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET: Two more members of the Phuket Hash House Harriers died this week following the death of a “hasher” in a motorcycle accident on Monday.

The most recent was Ruurd Jansen, 66, who died after the roof of his house collapsed on him on Wednesday.

Mr Jansen and his wife ran a beach-side restaurant called “Som” (“Orange”) near the Laguna complex in Cherng Talay.

He lived in Phuket for about six years and was an avid runner in the Hash, running most weekends, said Jaroen Deknatel, a former “Grand Master” of the Phuket Hash.

Mr Jansen was often better known by his Hash nickname, “Useless”, a joking reminder of the trinkets and souvenirs he sold at his successful gift shop in Holland before he moved to Phuket.

The nickname also played on Mr Jansen being a graduate of the prestigious Nyenrode Business Universiteit in his native Netherlands.

Mr Jansen was knocking down a wall at his home near the Heroines’ Monument when he was killed, said Mr Deknatel.

“He took a sledgehammer and started knocking a wall down. It must have been a supporting wall as the roof came down on top of him.

“A beam struck him. He is believed to have died instantly,” he said.

“He was a very nice guy, a very unassuming guy. It has been a very bad week for the Phuket Harriers,” Mr Deknatel added.

Although details of funeral services for Mr Jansen have yet to be finalized, the Gazette was told today that members of Mr Jansen’s family are expected to arrive in Phuket on Monday to make arrangements for the body.

Funeral services are expected to be held at Cherng Talay Temple on Monday, said Mr Deknatel.

The Gazette will publish more details as they are confirmed.

Mr Jansen’s death followed the death of long-time Phuket Hasher David Lyons, nicknamed “Rosie”.

Mr Lyons, who retired after a long career in the British Armed Forces, died from organ failure in hospital in the UK on Tuesday. He was 69.

The Phuket Hash website reported: “Sir Wanda [Dave Cooper] went to Rotherham Hospice on Monday with Bobby Suks, Doctor Jeckel, Blind Mullet & Fred to see Rosie. Emmy was with him.

“Sir Wanda says, ‘He was full of drugs & I’m not sure if he knew we were there with him. His friend Lol came by with his wife Margaret & another friend came by who I had met in Thailand named Neil.

“We spent a few hours with him then said our goodbyes, it was very obvious that he had only a short time left. I arrived home 8:30pm this evening [Tuesday] and got a phone call to say Rosie has passed away at 7:15pm. God bless him.”

The dire week for Phuket Hashers started on Monday morning with the death of Irish national Patrick “Paddy” O’Mahony.

He was killed when he lost control of his 1,400cc motorcycle on a notoriously dangerous curve on Thepkrasattri Road.

Known by his Hash moniker “Blarney Rubble”, Mr O’Mahony turned 57 the day before he died.

A Buddhist prayer service for Mr O’Mahony will be held at Laem Petch Temple in Patong from 7pm to 8pm tonight.

The funeral service starts 10:30am Sunday, followed by the cremation at 12:30pm.

Phuket Hash House Harriers will mark their 25th anniversary on June 25. Hundreds of hashers from Thailand and neighboring countries have already registered to take part.

For more information, click here.

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Thailand

Thai Airways to resume flights from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and Phuket

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thai Airways to resume flights from Bangkok to Chiang Mai and Phuket | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thai Airways

After nearly 9 months on the ground due to the coronavirus pandemic, along with problems balancing their accounts, Thai Airways will resume flights between Bangkok and Chiang Mai as well as Bangkok and Phuket later this month. The flights will start back up on Christmas day.

Flights from Bangkok to the 2 key tourist provinces have been grounded since April 1. Starting December 25, the airline will run 3 flights a week on both routes. A source told the Bangkok Post that the new schedules will run until at least February 28.

Thai Lion Air, Thai Air Asia, Nok Air, Thai Smile, VietJet Air and Bangkok Airways have returned to the domestic skies since July and slowly adding frequency to their routes.

In addition to resuming the domestic flights, the Thai Airways is relaunching some international flights from January 1 to March 27 including weekly flights to Frankfurt, London, Copenhagen, Sydney, Seoul, Manila, Taipei and Osaka. Flights from Bangkok to Tokyo will be available 3 times a week and flights from Bangkok to Hong Kong will be available every day.

Thai Airways has been tackling bankruptcy throughout the lockdown and trying to make up for more than 300 billion baht in losses. Since many flights were suspended due to travel restrictions, Thai Airways has tried to make money by business ventures on the ground, like a pop-up restaurant serving in-flight meals and selling off unwanted equipment from their warehouse. There also disposing of much of their older fleet, including all of their Boring 747-400s.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

97 police officers investigated for fiddling Covid-19 payments

Maya Taylor

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97 police officers investigated for fiddling Covid-19 payments | The Thaiger
PHOTO: www.newsbeezer.com

97 police officers, from 41 police stations, are currently being investigated for an alleged scam involving Covid-19 payments meant for officers who worked extra shifts during the crisis. The case was assigned by national police chief Suwat Jangyodsuk in November, when it came to light that some officers may have fraudulently claimed allowances meant for others.

In one incident, an officer responsible for transferring extra payments to police on the southern island of Phuket transferred the money to his own accountant instead. At the time, the transfer was dismissed as a mistake (in his favour), with the officer in question receiving a warning, and payments then made to the qualifying officers.

Wissanu Prasatthong-Osot from the National Internal Affairs Police says the investigation should reach a conclusion within the next 10 days.

“The result of the investigation should be ready in 10 days. Currently, 97 officers in 41 police stations ranging from non-commissioned to generals are under investigation for being involved in the swindle. The bureau aims to provide justice to all policemen involved. After the investigation concludes, the victims will receive their full allowance, while the offending officers will be punished under the law and disciplinary standards.”

Nation Thailand reports that a full list of alleged offenders has been sent to Suwat, with Wissanu promising that none will escape prosecution.

“The National Police chief had also ordered the transfer of offending officers at the commander and sub-commander levels out of their areas as per the investigation procedures.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Tourism

Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce to propose Guangzhou-Phuket tourism route

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce to propose Guangzhou-Phuket tourism route | The Thaiger
PHOTO: 77 kaoded

A tourism route from Guangzhou, China to Phuket could help the island province recover from the recession brought on by the pandemic and lack of foreign travel, according to the Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce. The president of the organisation, Narongsak Puttapornmongkol, says they plan to submit a letter proposing the route under a travel bubble scheme to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

The Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce is proposing a travel bubble with around 20 cities in China with no recent coronavirus infections and considered to be at a low risk of spreading the virus. Travellers from Guangzhou recently entered Thailand on the new Special Tourist Visa. It was the second flight of international tourists since travel restrictions were imposed in late-March.

“We believe that the Travel Bubble and the quarantine reduction will resolve the tourism business, which is a huge economic opportunity to recover.”

Once a vaccine is widely available, Narongsak suggests that those who wish to Thailand could also present their vaccination certificate or examination reports from the place of origin. He adds that the mandatory state quarantine period is likely to be reduced.

SOURCE: Pattaya News

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