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Phuket

Unlicensed foreigners in 60% of Patong motorbike accidents

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Unlicensed foreigners in 60% of Patong motorbike accidents | The Thaiger

PATONG (TNA, Gazette): The poorly-regulated “motorbike for hire” industry in Patong has contributed to an alarming number of motorcycle accidents in Kathu district, where more than half of the 500 accidents reported to Kathu Police involved unlicensed foreign motorcyclists, the government’s Thai News Agency (TNA) has reported.

With many motorcycle rental shops in Patong, foreign tourists and expats can easily rent a motorcycle without having a license, as this is not strictly monitored by the authorities, TNA reported.

For many tourists, renting a motorbike in Patong is an attractive option as a single ride in a tuk-tuk in the resort town, which charges the most expensive tuk tuk fares in the country, will cost about the same or less as the rental of a motorbike for a 24-hour period – about 150 baht.

Kathu Police Superintendent Col Grissak Songmoonnark was quoted as saying, “About 60% of motorcycle accidents are from unlicensed foreign motorcyclists, but there are so many unlicensed foreign motorcyclists that we can’t check the exact number. We can count only when accidents occur.”

Local residents have also expressed their concern about some foreign motorcyclists whose reckless riding has tarnished the image of one of the world’s top tourist destinations. Some foreigners simply do not even know Thai traffic rules. Many like to ride fast, frightening local people and other foreign tourists seeking a peaceful holiday, the TNA report read.

“They always ride fast and crosscut other cars. I’m so scared I will crash one day,” one local resident was quoted as saying.

However, the Land Transportation Department on Phuket insists tourists and expatriates can ride motorcycles in Thailand only when they have been issued a motorcycle license by the department.

Motorbike licenses are obtained by submitting identification documents and a work permit or an address guaranteed by the Thai Immigration Office, then passing written and practical tests. The process can be done in a day.

There was no mention in the TNA report of any impending crackdown of the many outfits who rent motorcycles to foreigners without a license.

In most cases, all the renters need to do is hand over their passport as a form of surety.

Motorbike rental is also popular among some Thai criminals, who use the vehicles when carrying out crimes such as “snatch and runs” thefts.



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Phuket

Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken

The Thaiger

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Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Phuket Traffic Report VIDEO: Provided by Newshawk Phuket

The tour bus accident on Patong yesterday afternoon, the third such incident in the same spot within 24 hours, has caused three injuries and with vehicles damaged as the bus careered down the hill, out of control. There were 10 tourists on the bus who were shaken by the incident but unharmed.

The Patong Police heard about the incident, adjacent to the Suwankeereewong Temple (Wat Patong) on Phra Baramee Road, the bottom of Patong Hill, just after 3.30pm yesterday.

Police and Kusoldharm rescue workers arrived to find damaged vehicles including a tour bus, passenger vans, trucks, cars and pickups – a total of 12 vehicles.

The three injuries were a van driver and two motorbike drivers. They were taken to Patong and Vachira Phuket Hospitals.

The 27 year old bus driver Pantarit Kaewprawat told police that he was driving down the hill when other vehicles in front of him were braking suddenly. So he tried to avoid the collision with others vehicles in front of him by veering right into oncoming traffic.

Police are continuing their investigation and inspecting local CCTV footage and available dash cam footage (like the one below). In the footage, the bus is traveling, at speed, in the on-coming traffic lane, seemingly unable to stop.

PHUKET – VIDEOAnother angle of yesterday afternoon's collision at the bottom of Patong Hill showing the bus clearly had no brakes, or the driver was unable to use them.VIDEO: Aekkarin Piromrid / Sugusoil Oil / Newshawk Phuket

Posted by The Thaiger on Wednesday, January 23, 2019

VIDEO – Patong Hill accident adjacent to the temple at the bottom of Phra Baramee Road.VIDEO: Newshawk Phuket

Posted by The Thaiger Radio on Wednesday, January 23, 2019

 

 

Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger Bus crash on Patong Hill takes out 12 other vehicles, passengers in bus shaken | News by The Thaiger

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Phuket

Chalong Police tracking down a foreigner caught on camera carrying a sea star

The Thaiger

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Chalong Police tracking down a foreigner caught on camera carrying a sea star | The Thaiger

Chalong Police are trying to track down a foreign man caught on camera carrying a sea star along Chalong Pier.

Chalong Police are checking CCTV footage at the Chalong Pier to find the foreign man who was caught on camera carrying sea stars in a plastic bag along the pier on Tuesday.

Read more about the story HERE.

Khanchit Klingklip, who posted the story on his Facebook and a member of Healthy Reef Club, met with Chalong Police yesterday to give more information about the incident.

Chalong Police say they have to find the tourist in order to identify where he found the sea star as each area has different law enforcement. However the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) Phuket Office hasn’t filed a report to police as yet.

Khun Khanchit says, “We asked the tourist for the sea star so we could return it to the sea on the same day.”

Chalong Police tracking down a foreigner caught on camera carrying a sea star | News by The Thaiger Chalong Police tracking down a foreigner caught on camera carrying a sea star | News by The Thaiger

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Bangkok

Thailand Tourism Forum 2019 – Reflections #1

The Thaiger

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Thailand Tourism Forum 2019 – Reflections #1 | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Thailand Tourism Forum 2019

One of the key points made at the recently concluded Thailand Tourism Forum 2019 in Bangkok, was the country’s over reliance on mass tourism.

Jesper Palmqvist of STR presented full year hotel data for Phuket which showed signs of recovery, yet highlighting the full impact of the drop in Chinese business after the July boat tragedy.

Citing the number’s co-organiser of the event C9 Hotelworks Bill Barnett expressed concern that while airlift numbers remain positive, the massive impact of unlicensed accommodation on the Thai hotel sector was adding to the supply demand equation.

Bill said, “While many hotel owners are asking where have all the tourist arrivals gone, in many cases the answer is they are staying  in a condo or villa that does not have to comply with the same regulations that hotels are required to and this grey sector is adding to this year’s tourism challenges.”

Thailand Tourism Forum 2019 - Reflections #1 | News by The Thaiger Thailand Tourism Forum 2019 - Reflections #1 | News by The Thaiger

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