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New plan to allow later boozing draws flak

BANGKOK: Allowing pubs to open until 4am in some tourist provinces will only increase casualties from alcohol-related causes, says the Centre of Alcohol Studies of Maha Sarakham University’s Faculty of Pharmacy.

By Bangkok Post

Monday 15 August 2022, 09:25AM

Tourists enjoy the Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan of Surat Thani province on Friday night (Aug 12). Photo: Supapong Chaolan

Tourists enjoy the Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan of Surat Thani province on Friday night (Aug 12). Photo: Supapong Chaolan

It opposes plans by Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn to seek permission from the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) to allow pubs to open two hours later, reorts the Bangkok Post.

Mr Phiphat has earlier said he would submit his plan to the CCSA next month for consideration. If the CCSA agrees with it, it will come into effect in October. The tourist provinces include Bangkok, Pattaya of Chon Buri, Krabi, Phuket, Hua Hin of Prachuap Khiri Khan, Samui of Surat Thani and Chiang Mai.

He claimed pushing back the curfew would boost the night economy, not increase alcohol sales.

However, Surasak Chaiyasong, deputy director of the centre, said the alcohol curfew is endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to prevent deaths and problems from alcohol-related causes.

He said many countries have alcohol-free hours or alcohol-free days each week to reduce fights, assaults, drunk driving and other nighttime crimes.

In contrast, the ease in sales of alcohol, especially at night, can increase the number of casualties from drunk driving and assaults.

In Iceland, the road accident rate rises after an alcohol-sale hour extension.

Mr Surasak added that, according to a report in Norway, one hour extra for alcohol sales has raised the physical abuse rate by 16%.

Mr Phiphat inspected the latest Full Moon Party on Had Rin on Koh Pha-ngan on Friday evening (Aug 12).

The packed party was joined by some 10,000 Thai and foreign revellers arriving in droves on shuttle boats from nearby Koh Samui, some docking as late as 9pm.

“The visitors said they enjoyed travelling to Koh Samui and Koh Pha-ngan and experiencing the Full Moon Party or the Half Moon Party,” he said.

People told him they lamented the short duration of the Full Moon Party. They wanted the fun to carry on until 4am. “I’ll ask the cabinet and the Interior Ministry to approve the extension,” Mr Phiphat said. “The Full Moon Party has a unique appeal to people.”

Locals on Koh Pha-ngan must look after tourists and help create a safe environment, he said.

The rebound in tourism after more than two years of painful stagnation from the COVID-19 pandemic is helping to revitalise the economy.

Mr Phiphat led the inspection by a combined law enforcement team on Koh Pha-ngan comprising police, soldiers and local administrative leaders. Deputy Surat Thani governor Sitthipong Klai-udom also took part.

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christysweet | 16 August 2022 - 10:25:24

I beleive Britain found that keeping bars open later reduced drunk driving, people stay  in the bar  until completely knockered and then can't find their keys or their car and take a cab. Cut down on petty crime, fights etc in the vicinity, too.  

DeKaaskopp | 15 August 2022 - 16:31:06

Huh Kurt ?  RTP ?   What has your comment to do with this article ? 

Kurt | 15 August 2022 - 15:06:54

Dek is not defending the RTP, seems he agrees with all comments about RTP. Has he a bright moment?

Kurt | 15 August 2022 - 15:03:37

Don't talk about alcohol only. As the marijuana spirit is out of the bottle without law sufficient control yet ( only bla bla) it are going to be great party times!! So much nonsese talks. Safe environment and a 10,000 + full moon party thing, how to match that? What is so unique about full-, plus now for commerce also half moon parties? It is just money business, nothing environment.

DeKaaskopp | 15 August 2022 - 14:38:08

@Fascinated   Don't worry ! There will be enough places opening until 04.00 am..   Anyway,your "Sunday Tea Dance" won't be affected at all.

Fascinated | 15 August 2022 - 09:56:17

Dkk will be gutted that he can't dance til dawn.


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