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Phuket Opinion: Kicking up a stink

PHUKET OPINION: The quality of the seawater around Phuket was a hot topic on the island a few years ago. Following complaints by German holidaymakers, a German documentary maker visited the island in 2011 to take water samples at various points and off beaches around the island.


Jody Houton

Monday 29 April 2013, 09:13AM


Phuket Opinion: Kicking up a stink

Samples were damning, and those from Karon beach especially, were found to contain unhealthy and unacceptable levels of contamination and polluted water.

The cause – the pumping out of untreated water from the waste water treatment plant directly into the sea – was filmed and included in the documentary.

Much hoo-haa was made, apologies issued and weak explanations of being unable to cope with the quantity of waste, offered. The result included a new warning sign, promises of it no longer happening and a new lick of paint for the waste water treatment plant.

Presenter of Wir Retten Ihren Urlaub (We Save Your Holiday), Ralf Benko promised to return to retake samples, but has not yet made public of when that might be.

The issue of untreated water again reared its ugly head this week in two different canals (known as klongs) on the island.

The situation was considered so dire with the Klong Bang Yai canal in Samkong that Governor Maitree Intusut was called in because local authorities had refused the local residents’ requests to deal with the problem for over two years.

A similar explanation was given – that there was just too much waste water to treat. In fact, in the Rassada municipality, an area that the klong passes through, there are no waste water treatment facilities at all.

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