The ceremony was held at Kamala Public Park, starting at 9am.
Also present were Phuket Vice Governor Supoj Rotreuang Na Nongkhai and others officials.
“The Tourist Police have implemented a project to improve their services for people and tourists, and so have opened this center at Kamala Beach. It is a place where tourists can be welcomed with a warm heart, and tourists can be confident in their safety,” Gen Wirachai said.
Col Thongchai Wilaiprom of Tourist Police Division 3 said, “We have a duty to maintain safety of life and property. Also we have to protect the tourists’ safety as it is important in us providing services to tourists, so this centre will help tourists at Kamala, Surin and Cherng Talay beaches.
“This tourist police mobile centre was supported by the Phuket office of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the Kamala Tambon Administration Organisation (OrBorTor) and local entrepreneurs,” he added.
The mobile centre in Kamala is the fourth to be launched on the island since Tourist Police Division 3 Chief Maj Gen Angkoon Klaiklueng in November last year announced the plan to set up 12 such centres in Phuket, Maj Ekkachai Siri of the Phuket Tourist Police told The Phuket News.
“We don’t know when the other eight centres will open in the future,” he said.
The other three Tourist Police mobile centres already set up are located at the airport, in Patong and in Karon.
All four mobile centres cover services at the main beaches in their respective areas, Maj Ekkachai said.
“The Kamala centre covers Cherng Talay and Surin beaches, the Karon centre also covers Kata beach, and the centre at Phuket International Airport also covers Nai Yang and Nai Thon beaches,” he explained.
The Tourist Police centre at Kamala will be manned by three officers, who will have the capability of monitoring CCTV cameras overlooking – and recording footage of – major roads in the area, Maj Ekkachai said.
More importantly, he noted, “It is a one-stop service for tourists to ask for help.”
The Kamala Tourist Police “mobile centre”, like the other “mobile units”, is self-contained and set up in a shipping container, though very unlikely to be relocated considering the embellishments that now surround the centre.
The Kamala centre also includes two Segway personal transporters and an ATV.
“The Tourist Police mobile centre at Karon beach has not yet been officially opened, but it is already in operation, providing the same services as the Kamala centre,” Maj Ekkachai added.
Maj Ekkachai also today confirmed, “Each Tourist Police mobile centre costs about B400,000 to set up, all funded by the Ministry of Tourism & Sports.”
Asked why the mobile centres are taking so long to roll out, he replied, “It has taken a long time to clear the official processes.”
When announcing the launch of the Tourist Police mobile centres in November, Tourist Police Division 3 Chief Maj Gen Angkoon noted, “When the centres are finished, Tourist Police will work with other local agencies such as lifeguards, police, and so on. We will put an ATV at the center for help when needed.” (See story here.)