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Doomed ‘Phoenix’ substandard: international experts

PHUKET: Police and international specialists have concluded the sunken Phoenix boat was substandard and illegally approved, and many officials and others connected with the July 5 tragedy will lose their jobs, the immigration chief said.

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By Bangkok Post

Monday 17 December 2018, 09:05PM


The sunken ’Phoenix’ was lifted from the 45-metre-deep seabed off Phuket in mid-November. Photo: Transport Ministry via Bangkok Post

The sunken ’Phoenix’ was lifted from the 45-metre-deep seabed off Phuket in mid-November. Photo: Transport Ministry via Bangkok Post

Pol Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn, the immigration police commissioner, said in Phuket today (Dec 17) that crime detection police and specialists from China and Germany examined the vessel after it was salvaged.

“Chinese and German specialists agree that the boat was substandard… It was not built at a shipyard but at a machine shop. Police have laid down charges during the interrogation process. Phuket marine officials were prosecuted for dereliction of duty,” he said.

Gen Surachate said the boat should have had four watertight doors, but it had only one. Its glass windowpanes should have been of marine grade – breakable with a fist – but they were not.

"Many people died inside the boat because they were unable to break through its glass panes," the immigration chief said.

He also said that the boat’s engine was actually for a Hino truck. The boat was not built with a balanced body and instead used concrete lumps to balance it, Gen Surachate said.

A boat construction project should have 40-50 pages of blueprints, but Phoenix had only four to five blueprints, he said.

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He assured people that authorities would take legal action against the engineers who accepted the boat design and approved its construction, together with the officials who authorised its construction and permitted its operation in the sea.

Gen Surachate said that he informed the Chinese consul-general that there would be a press conference to close the case next week.

The immigration police chief also said that more Chinese tourists were visiting Thailand thanks to marketing promotions and strict legal measures in response to the Phoenix boat tragedy, which killed 47 Chinese tourists while operating despite a rough sea warning on July 5.

 

Read original story here.

 

 

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BigA | 19 December 2018 - 08:08:50

Any bet's there will not one Thai official as usual ,stand up and answer your question!
Horst

Kurt | 18 December 2018 - 05:56:02

Well, the outcome of the international investigation asks for 1 important 'order' from Bangkok to all thai Marine offices: .."Go out and inspect all vessels like Phoenix"..    I am sure there are more sailing thai death traps like the Phoenix was.
If no preventive inspections happen than the Phoenix disaster will not be the last one.

Nasa12 | 18 December 2018 - 05:28:02

Every singel boats in phuket are built in a back yard, not a single tourist boat is built by any thai or international standard (maybe some thai standard).

Discover Thainess | 17 December 2018 - 21:39:57

So how many other substandard boats are out there? If there is one there are certainly plenty or others. And is the head of the marine office being sacked? Or jailed? Surely responsibly stays with the boss? Criminal charges to come?

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