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Red-tape nightmare for parks entry

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Red-tape nightmare for parks entry | The Thaiger

PHUKET: It’s official: the postponement of the fee hike for foreigners visiting national parks in Thailand has been canceled. Thais will be allowed into the parks at the old price, ranging from as little as 5 baht to 20 baht, whereas foreigners (including foreigners resident in Thailand) will have to pay 200 baht for adults and 100 baht for children. As a way to mollify tour and dive operators, a concessionary coupon scheme has been launched to allow the operators to take clients into the parks at the old rate. Discussions held at the Marine National Parks Division offices in Bangkok on Tuesday firmed up plans for the coupon system. The scheme, which threatens to be a bureaucratic nightmare, will work as follows: Coupons will be issued for all of Thailand’s national parks. The price will be 20 baht (10 baht for children) except for the Surin and Similans Marine National Parks, which will be priced at 40 baht (20 baht for children). Operators wishing to buy coupons must submit an application to join the scheme to the Marine National Parks Department of the RFD in Bangkok. The deadline for submission of applications will be the end of office hours on October 19. Upon receiving the application, the Marine National Parks Department (MNPD) will issue the operator with a receipt. As part of the application, operators will have to specify how many coupons they will need for the year up to September 30, 2001. They will not be allowed to buy more coupons later on if business is better than anticipated. If they buy fewer coupons than stated on the application, they risk being blacklisted by the RFD, and may be refused entry to the parks in the 2001-2002 high season. “It will take about a week to approve an application if all the documents are correct,” explained Suwan Prasertphon, senior officer at the MNPD. Once the application is approved, the operator will receive a confirmation fax or letter, following which he should again visit the MNPD, taking with him the fax or letter and the application receipt. He will then be required to fill in a second application form, this time to buy a specific number of coupons. K. Suwan explained that each coupon will be divided into three parts. The first part will be kept on file at the RFD. The tour companies will then have two parts: one as a receipt for the client and one to be handed over to the park officer on entry to the park. “Tour operators must provide us with a copy of the company chop to stamp the back of all three parts of the coupons in order to identify which companies bought them,” K. Suwan added. After a couple of days, once the civil servants have finished chopping the backs of the coupons, the operator may go back to the MNPD office for a third time to collect his coupons. The procedure must be repeated whenever the operator wishes to buy more coupons. Operators will not be obliged to buy the whole year’s allotment of coupons at once; they may spread purchases through the year. The coupons will be in books of 100. Each purchase will require the operator to fill in an application form, then return after a couple of days to pick up the coupons, duly chopped. “A company must buy [in the course of the year] exactly the same number of coupons as specified in the initial application form. Failing that, they will be recorded in a list of unreliable operators who may be denied entry to the parks next high season,” said K. Suwan. The chief of the Similan Islands Marine National Park, Wittaya Hongwiangchan, told the Gazette that each coupon will be valid for five nights/six days per entry, and will be good for one entry only. “So, in case of dive operators, if they want to visit the Similans for a couple of days, then go to the Surins, and then back to the Similans again, they will have to use three entry coupons per client,” he explained. Exceptions in the case of difficulties caused by bad weather will be considered by the chief of the park himself. K. Suwan said that he expects a meeting to be held in Phuket at the end of October between RFD officials – possibly including RFD chief Plodprasop Suraswadi – the Tourism Authority of Thailand and tour and dive operators, at which the details of the scheme will be explained and questions answered. To confirm details of requirements for applications, operators should call K. Suwan at the Marine National Parks Division of the RFD on (02) 5797047.



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Phuket

Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | The Thaiger

A motorbike driver has filed a report with police against a cable company after he became tangled up in their cabling while driving to work in Kata.

26 year old Chakaree Yawaekaree filled the report with Chalong Police against the local cable company.

Mr Chakaree told Police that he was driving to work in Kata on Friday morning. When he arrived at the scene he ran into the cabling that had dropped down, just above the road level. The cables hooked his motorbike and caused him to crash and fall off. He was taken to hospital where he was treated for scrapes, grazes and a badly injured right knee.

Chalong Police say they are continuing their investigation. They say the cables belong to a private company and that this kind of incident happens “very often”.

Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger Motorbike driver files official complaint after accident from fallen cables in Kata | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Motorbike driver dies after colliding with sedan on Thepkasattri Road, Phuket

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Motorbike driver dies after colliding with sedan on Thepkasattri Road, Phuket | The Thaiger

A motorbike driver has died after colliding with a sedan driven by a Russian driver who was allegedly making a “risky” U-turn on Thepkrasattri Road in Koh Kaew yesterday.

The incident happened at 3.30pm yesterday.

Police and other emergency responders arrived to find a white sedan, a motorbike and a pickup truck.

The motorbike driver had sustained serious injuries – 19 year old Weerapat Chamnina – and had already been rushed tp Mission Phuket Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Police report that a white sedan, whose driver was a 37 year old Russian man, Maxim Shadrin, was heading along the southbound lane of Thepkasattri Road.

Police speculate that he was trying to make a U-turn but was allegedly out of the lane of traffic making the turn.

The motorbike collided with the rear of the man’s sedan.  The motorbike driver bounced off to the other side of the road (northbound lane).  Then a pickup truck hit the motorbike driver.

Police are continuing their investigation and examining all the CCTV footage.

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Phuket

54 year old Swede dodges traffic in Thepkasattri Road, Phuket

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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54 year old Swede dodges traffic in Thepkasattri Road, Phuket | The Thaiger

PHUKET: Achadtaya Chuenniran

A 54 year old Swedish tourist is now in custody after running around Thepkasattri road yesterday morning dodging cars and causing traffic mayhem. Luckily no cars came in contact with the man police described as ‘mentally ill’.

A video clip from the incident shows the man running in and out of the traffic on Thepkasattri Road in Thalang. The incident happened around 2.30am.

The road had to be closed for 20-30 minutes as police apprehended the man, unhurt. The motive for his dangerous antics have not become apparent at this stage.

The man, who remains named was taken to Thalang Hospital for checking then was transferred to Vachira Hospital in Phuket Town. Police revealed that his visa expired on the same day so they’ve contacted the local Swedish consular officials to check on the man’s family and travel situation.

The Swede is currently being evaluated and treated in the hospital’s psychiatric wing.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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