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Submarine firm woos authorities

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Submarine firm woos authorities | The Thaiger
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PHUKET: The promoters of planned submarine trips for tourists last night made a bid to convince authorities that their machine is safe – and to persuade them to issue the necessary permits. The presentation by Phuket Submarine Ltd, at the Royal Phuket City Hotel, featured slides of the DS-48 sub that the promoters hope will be operating in the waters around Phuket by the end of this year. The company is seeking licenses to operate from November. A DS-48, which can carry up to 50 passengers underwater for an hour, will arrive in Thailand in September. The battery-powered sub can dive to a depth of 75 meters and has a maximum speed of 3 knots (about 6 kmh). Similar vessels are already operated by Phuket Submarine’s partner, Pacific Subsea Saipan Inc, in the waters off the mid-Pacific islands of Saipan and Guam. (See also https://www.submarine.co.mp/ ) Pacific Subsea Saipan’s general manager, Jack McClure, was in Phuket in June last year to talk with Governor CEO Pongpayome Vasaputi and other local government officials. Dokmai Island, near Maithon Island, is the likely destination for the sub, which will make about eight 40-minute trips a day, with passengers able to view their surroundings through large glass windows. The cost is expected to be US$55 (about 2,500 baht) per person. Four external cameras allow the pilot to track the sub’s path and a boat on the surface also keeps track of the sub’s position. Last night’s presentation and briefing at the Royal Phuket City Hotel was attended by local authorities and representatives of the Royal Thai Navy. Issue raised included the difficulty identifying which regulations apply to the underwater vessel, and its effect on the marine environment. Safety of passengers is also a concern, though the submarine’s builders say they have been operating for 15 years off the mid-Pacific islands of Saipan and Guam, without a single accident. Vice Admiral Pairoj Theerachai told the group: “When it comes to national security, there is no problem at all because the submarine will operate in one area, and not go anywhere else. “As for safety, it has a secure system, according to the certificates, including ones from the Environmental Protection Association [of Thailand] and the US Defense Department. “We will have a meeting and talk with the Phuket Harbor Master about how we are going to register the pilot. The existing regulations deal only with surface vessels, not submarines.” Surin Bomrungpol, Managing Director of Phuket Submarine said, “Deputy Prime Minister Somsak Thepsuthin has said he would like to support this [project] because Phuket has beautiful natural resources but still trails behind Singapore and Malaysia in terms of technology.”

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Phuket

Phuket workshop helps residents cope with high stress brought on by the economic crisis

Caitlin Ashworth

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Phuket workshop helps residents cope with high stress brought on by the economic crisis | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Facebook: ประชาสัมพันธ์ เทศบาลตำบลวิชิต

Hundreds of residents in Phuket’s Wichit subdistrict attended a workshop focused on reducing stress from to the pandemic-induced economic crisis. A psychologist was even on site to help those who had extreme mental stress and a Buddhist monk taught meditation techniques to reduce physiological effects of stress.

The event was planned in response to an online survey conducted by the municipality asking residents about how much stress they were experiencing from the economic climate. They found that some residents had serious stress issues brought on by the pandemic and financial problems, according to Wichit Mayor Kreetha Chotiwichphiphat.

“The loss of income due to the economic crisis brought on by the Covid-19 situation has resulted in some people in the area suffering serious stress, which can lead to serious mental health issues.”

Around 350 people attended the event. The mayor says it was the first step in caring for the residents’ mental health. Local officials plan to hold similar workshops in the future.

“It was a good opportunity for people to realise the importance of mental health and to learn techniques of how to deal with stress, which will help people to maintain their physical health and avoid developing mental health problems.”

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Phuket

Phuket’s Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter

The Thaiger

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Phuket’s Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | The Thaiger

The Soi Dog Foundation has officially opened its Humane Education Centre, the first of its kind in Thailand dedicated to the welfare of stray animals. The centre, located at the Soi Dog shelter in northern Phuket, forms part of the foundation’s Humane Education program. Rolled out in 2017, the program sees a team visit Thai schools to teach the next generation the basic principles of animal welfare and promote empathetic attitudes towards both owned pets and free-roaming strays.

The program has reached a total of 15,058 students and 861 teachers to date. With a dedicated classroom as well as educational tools and resources now on site at the shelter, Soi Dog will be able to expand the programme and reach an even greater number of young minds.

Co-founder and president of Soi Dog Foundation International John Dalley said, “The cornerstones of what we do – what I believe very firmly are the answers to the stray dog problem throughout Asia – are large-scale sterilisation of stray dogs and cats and education of, particularly, the next generation.

“We see all the time the problems that are being caused through us not respecting the environment and not respecting the other animals with whom we share this planet. That’s why education is so important.”

John also thanked the supporters and donors who made the construction of the centre possible. After cutting the ribbon, the students filed into the brand-new facility for the very first on-site class – a fun and interactive hour of roleplaying, brainstorming and problem solving.

Humane Education Manager Nuttawut “Film” Kumngern. said… “We want to encourage kindness toward animals, especially free-roaming dogs and cats, and teach youngsters to be responsible pet owners. This will sustainably reduce animal cruelty and pet abandonment.”

“We hope to one day see animal welfare incorporated into the curriculum in Thai schools, and our education centre is a great start.”

Soi Dog is ready to welcome school groups from Phuket and other provinces to the centre which can accommodate up to 40 students at any one time. Schools interested in participating are encouraged to email film@soidog.org

Phuket's Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | News by The ThaigerPhuket's Soi Dog Foundation opens Humane Education Centre at Mai Khao shelter | News by The Thaiger

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Police have yet to investigate illegal hiring of foreign teachers at international school in Phuket

The Thaiger

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Police have yet to investigate illegal hiring of foreign teachers at international school in Phuket | The Thaiger

Chalong police in Phuket say they have yet to start investigating the illegal hiring of foreign teachers at an international school in Rawai, south of the island. Palm House International School allegedly hired foreign teachers illegally in which 2 were arrested by Phuket Immigration police on November 4.

Somkiet Sarasin, the leading investigator of the case, says the 2 Brits were informed that police were processing a charge of working illegally in the country against them, in which both denied the charges. Somkiet says the 2 were released on bail, but did not confirm the amount of bail that was set by the police.

“They are still staying in Thailand. I am not worried. I have their passports. I am not available to explain [any details] because the investigation is still ongoing.”

“This is normal for an investigation when the suspects deny the charge against them. I have to check more information against their claims. This case will probably be concluded next month.”

However, the investigation has yet to begin, with Somkiet saying he has not even questioned the owner of the school, despite his claims the case would be finished next month.

“The investigation into the school will take time. The investigation into the two British people must be finished first.”

Such allegations of foreign teachers working illegally have recently been in the news after Sarasas Witaed Sainoi Pitiyakarn School, in the central province of Nonthaburi, saw 7 foreign teachers probed for being hired illegally. That school, along with others in its private network, made nationwide news after CCTV caught a Thai teacher hitting, pushing and dragging a young student in the classroom. Such widespread violence against students has long been a sad component of many Thai schools, in which some of the teachers are unqualified and unlicensed to teach, but are hired anyway.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

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