Phuket civilian beach rescues continue as officials fail to turn up for duty

PHUKET: A local resident walking along the sands at Bang Tao Beach rescued a Filipino man found unconscious in the surf yesterday afternoon (Oct 8).

By The Phuket News

Monday 9 October 2017, 10:29AM

Lt Sathaporn Thongthep of the Cherng Thalay Police was notified of the incident at 3:50pm.

Lt Sathaporn and rescue workers arrived at the scene, near the Muslim graveyard, to find the Filipino, later identified as Galileo Andrew Marie Castro, 25, still recovering on the beach.

Local beach vendors and beach-goers had already rendered emergency assistance until Mr Castor regained consciousness.

Rescue workers them took Mr Castro to Thalang Hospital to make sure he had not suffered more extensive injury.

One woman beach vendor, who asked not to be named, told The Phuket News, “The man was going drown. He was swimming in an area marked that had been with red flags because of strong waves. I already warned him, but he ignored me.”

Meanwhile at neighbouring Surin Beach, the “emergency beach safety” team ordered by the Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation (PPAO, or OrBorJor) to assist lifeguards who are still providing their services there for free failed to turn up for duty yesterday.

Staff at the PPAO’s Tourism Division, which is responsible for ensuring lifeguards patrol Phuket’s beaches, this morning explained that all officials authorised were unavailable to comment.

“As the weekend crowd of beach-goers arrived early at Surin Beach, the Phuket Governor’s beach safety team has not turned up. As of 10:30am Sunday, the team of beach safety personnel and ‘lifeguards’ are a no-show,” one experienced volunteer lifeguard told The Phuket News.


“The two OrBorJor sea rescue lifeguards in green shorts did not turn up yesterday either. The ambulance and Civil Defense Volunteers also have failed to turn up.”

“The OrBorJor sea rescue personnel have cited safety reasons for not wanting to continue, after witnessing several rescues and realising they are out of their area of expertise as ocean lifeguards,” the lifeguard noted.

“It is not acceptable for those charged with Phuket’s beach safety to fail to turn up, or abandon their post. This will lead to disaster,” he added.

Meanwhile, Surin-BangTao Surf Lifesaving Club continues to have lifeguards posted a specific locations at Surin, Bang Tao and Layan beaches.

“We want to show responsibility and good faith in protecting our beach users, but we can’t go much longer without pay or support,” the lifeguard told The Phuket News.

“We would like to remind all of Phuket’s beach patrons to make sure qualified lifeguards are present before they enter the water at any beach.

“If you don't see a lifeguard with a clearly marked uniform, we recommend not entering the water. This is for your own safety,” he added.

Additional reporting by Eakkapop Thongtub



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moskito | 10 October 2017 - 06:58:10

The only REAL message it sends to the tourists in the world wich  the TAT lured to Thailand with their phantastic idea of SUMMER SEASON instead of OFF-Season, is F YOU ... we the Thai authorities are just not intresting in your well beeing and your life, if you think you need to swim and you drown, up to you!!!
That is a terrible behaviour whats going on here since YEARS to safe a couple of bu...

Kurt | 09 October 2017 - 15:55:59

Well, here is something for Thai officials/authorities:
It is never to late to start working or searching for responsibilities.
There is a Buddhist saying that no karma is more important than present action.

marcher | 09 October 2017 - 12:32:20

Maybe Prayut and Section 44?

Kurt | 09 October 2017 - 10:40:46

Hahaha, what we see here is that the whole "We do it ourselves idea" is already imploding in less than 48 hours.
All suppose 'new life guards' to turn up didn't, realizing that to rescue ( being unexperienced) and not being paid,... that is a no go.
They not care about the foreign tourists on their beaches.

And all officials authorized where unavailable to comment.

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