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B140mn CCTV project punted to support Phuket ‘Smart City’ lifeguards

PHUKET: The Digital Economy Promotion Agency (DEPA) has revealed plans to spend B140 million on a CCTV system to somehow support lifeguards to provide better protection for swimmers at Phuket beaches during the dangerous southwest monsoon.

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By The Phuket News

Wednesday 23 May 2018, 05:58PM


The B140 million CCTV system is aimed at helping lifeguards identifying swimmers in distress in Phuket's southwest monsoon surf. Photo: The Phuket News / file

The B140 million CCTV system is aimed at helping lifeguards identifying swimmers in distress in Phuket's southwest monsoon surf. Photo: The Phuket News / file

Pracha Asawathira, Manager of the DEPA office in Phuket, has presented the plan to Phuket Governor Norraphat Plodthong, reports ManagerOnline. (See story here.)

However, the story, posted yesterday (May 22), did not define when the plan was presented. The plan has yet to be reported by the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department.

“We want to support the lifeguards in their work, which will provide safety to tourists,” Mr Pracha said.

“Plus we want to show the press that we are confident that Phuket is ready to be a ‘Smart City’, now that we have Wi-Fi hotspots installed at 1,000 points, which we announced last month,” Mr Pracha expounded.

“CCTV cameras will support lifeguards to be more effective in their work, especially while there are not enough lifeguards to take care of all the tourists,” he added.

BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET

Apparently a “special program” will allow the CCTV cameras to identify when swimmers are no longer in the designated safe swimming zones, and send direct alerts to a mobile phone via an application, Mr Pracha explained.

“DEPA presented this project to Governor Norraphat Plodthong. I think 40 cameras are worth about B140 million to be installed on 13 beaches. If we get the budget, then it will take about four months to install.

“Now we have installed a CCTV camera at Patong Beach for testing. It will be used soon,” Mr Pracha said.

“If this project is not approved, I will present it to local administration organisation (OrBorTor and municipalities).

“I am confident in this CCTV project. It will definitely improve Phuket’s tourism image, and especially boost tourists’ confidence in the safety of their lives,” Mr Pracha added.

 

 

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BenPendejo | 25 May 2018 - 13:36:14

Lifeguard contract for 23 million baht was shut down, but now these stooges want to spend 5 times as much on lifeguard cameras.  You just can't make this s#1t up.  Greed and corruption are clearly alive and thriving here in Phuket.  Thai officials are showing that they really don't understand the seriousness of the issue, and that concern for tourist safety is just not that important.

Foot | 25 May 2018 - 11:40:45

Island Man is correct.
As with most of the traffic CCTC, they rarely work, be maintained, or even monitored.
The B140 million would pay for 100 lifeguards @ B15K month, year round, for six years.  Ans, still provide funds for operational costs.
I love Thailand, but, it's difficult to understand why the simplest solutions are ignored and the unworkable, most expensive are used.
Why i$ thi$ ...

Island Man | 25 May 2018 - 08:48:14

Why spend an exorbitant amount of money when towers, maned with lifeguards with binoculars, would do the job cheaper and more efficiently? 

Kurt | 24 May 2018 - 16:48:54

Do Phuket Authorities/Officials not understand that CCTV is just  noticing/recording accidents and drownings, not SMART PREVENTING 
When they start smart thinking and acting?

Being SMART is: Having trained beach life guards
Phuket Officials fascination with electronics, wifi, CCTV, not working Tsunami buoys and warning towers is alarming.
But lovely dismissing all of being responsible.

BenPendejo | 24 May 2018 - 12:55:13

Actually, if anything, the cameras should be trained on the lifeguards, filming them napping, smoking, yakking with friends, and not paying attention. But I bet the lifeguards love this idea, as it will allow them to sit on their arses and continue doing nothing, just wait for an emergency message from the camera system.  After each drowning, they can blame the camera for not telling them sooner.

Nasa12 | 24 May 2018 - 11:39:33

We must understand that Thai especially in Phuket will just sit in an office with aircon and watch tv (CCTV).And think how can they scam and cheat more money.

Sue Yu2 | 24 May 2018 - 10:41:39

Pathetic. If the authorities spent even a fraction of the proposed B140m on a proper budget for lifeguards then problems could be solved. Instead penny-pinching is costing peoples' lives. Stupid, stupid idea.

Rorri_2 | 24 May 2018 - 06:32:43

Also note that the tower, during patrol hours, is always manned,  with lifeguards patrolling the beach....NOt sitting around on their arse.

Rorri_2 | 24 May 2018 - 06:30:59

CCTV camera do not replace eyes on the beach, this is just another example of Thailand believing technology can replace people, eg, the so called safe zones. No patrolled beaches,in Australia, use cameras to replace/aid the lifeguards, perhaps these fools should watch an Australian TV series "Bondi Rescue."

MartinK | 24 May 2018 - 05:37:17

boondoggle(noun):work or activity that is wasteful or pointless but gives the appearance of having value.

BenPendejo | 23 May 2018 - 22:50:00

I think Pracha Asawathira should have to submit a blood sample for drug testing. This could very well take the cake for being the most stupid and wasteful project proposal to come out of a Phuket official...and there is some stiff competition. This just makes me wonder, are there any education requirements to lead a government department?  It sure doesn't seem like it.

Discover Thainess | 23 May 2018 - 20:33:01

Let’s hope it’s better maintained than the Tsunami warning buoys and towers .....

Xonax | 23 May 2018 - 20:19:52

That is some expensive camera´s.  3.5 Million a piece.  I hope that NACC will look into this purchase.

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