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Top doc warns of Veg Fest virus threat

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET CITY: The Vegetarian Festival is ostensibly a period of purity, but the Phuket Provincial Heath Office has nevertheless issued a statement warning people about the risks of HIV/Aids and hepatitis infection during the 10-day event.

Phuket Public Health Office chief Dr Paisan Worrasathit told the Gazette, “We are cautioning people who hurt themselves with puncture wounds from items such as spades, spears, knives, pins…. We fear some of them may contract diseases as a result,” he said.

Dr Paisan was speaking in reference to the scores of mah song (literally, “entranced horses”) spirit mediums who pierce such objects through their cheeks in acts of ritual self-mutilation, or do so with the assistance of “handlers” who escort them while they are entranced.

All involved should sterilize the instruments before piercing and then take steps to prevent viral and bacterial infection, both to the mah song and others who could come into contact with their blood, he said.

“Apart from the risks associated with sharp objects, we are also checking to ensure that proper hygiene is being maintained at food stalls by giving advice to vendors,” he said.

- Legacy Phuket Gazette

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017.

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Phuket

A man was fished out of the Surin Beach surf today – whilst on-duty lifesavers watched

The Thaiger

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PHOTOS: Pavida Anantarasmi

Witnesses at Surin Beach today watched in bemused confusion when a man, who was in difficulty whilst swimming off Surin Beach today, was helped back to shore. But not by one of the lifeguards on duty at the beach who stood at the shore and watched the rescue take place.

The incident happened around 11am when a man, later identified as from Lebanon, was swimming off the beach in an area patrolled by the employed lifeguards. There was no designated swimming area set aside by the lifeguards.

A local surfer, from The Philippines, noticed that the man was in difficulty and rushed to his assistance. The paid lifeguards watched from the shoreline and helped the man once he was back to shore.

A former lifeguard at the beach made the comment that the new lifeguards “don’t like to swim as they don’t have confidence or training.”

“They didn’t have any of the required equipment to attempt a rescue.”

The man was taken to the Thalang Hospital.

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Phuket

Four Dubai tourists pulled out of the Nai Harn surf

The Thaiger

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Four male tourists were dragged from the surf off Nai Harn beach after getting into difficulty in waves last night (July 22).

Nai Harn lifeguards rescued four Dubai male tourists at 7pm last night (Sunday).

The head of Nai Harn Lifeguards, Jula Nontree, says, “The incident happened at 7pm (just after sunset) after we had finished our official working hours at 6.30pm. Luckily there were some lifeguards who were still relaxing on the beach.”

“Four male tourists went into the water while red flags were still up. Four of them were in difficulty in swirling currents as there were strong winds and waves throughout the day.”

“Nara Rattanarak, Wanchai Tongyu and Chollatis Nontree who are Nai Harn Lifeguard went into the water to rescue them and brought them back up on to the shore. All four had choked on a lot of water – two of them have been taken to a hospital.”

      

PHOTOS: Nai Harn Lifeguard

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Phuket

Phuket’s crocodile arrives at Patong bay

The Thaiger

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Our latest crocodile update reports that it was last seen his morning (July 23) off Tritrang Beach in Patong Bay. Locals say that they have spotted the crocodile of Tritrang Beach at 9.15am.

Karon Deputy Mayor says, “Last night we didn’t see the crocodile. It was last seen in the waters off Karon Beach near the Karon roundabout at 5.30pm yesterday (July 22).”

Leader of the Kraithong Loomnam Tapi Nikhom Suksawat (crocodile catching team) says, “The crocodile has swum with the aid of the northern water currents, simply by floating on the water surface. So every beach needs to keep patrolling. The crocodile is stopping on beaches to take a rest as it might be tired with the strong winds and waves. We have a cage ready to trap the crocodile when it lands on any beaches.”

However beachgoers are being told not panic about the crocodile as authorities have many people patrolling the beaches from the shores and the skies as well as fishing boats trying to find the reptile.

A sand crocodile was built on Kata Noi Beach where the crocodile was seen lying on the beach on Saturday morning (July 21).

Watch the video HERE.

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