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Phuket police deny ‘robbing’ foreigners, defend traffic checks

Phuket police deny ‘robbing’ foreigners, defend traffic checks

PHUKET: Phuket Provincial Police have defended their officers standing in front of a restaurant in Patong after a post online accused police of “destroying tourism” and quoting foreign tourists as being “robbed”.

By The Phuket News

Thursday 25 November 2021, 03:42PM

The photo that accompanied the post that accused police of ‘destroying tourism’ and ‘robbing’ foreigners. Photo: via Phuket Provincial Police

The photo that accompanied the post that accused police of ‘destroying tourism’ and ‘robbing’ foreigners. Photo: via Phuket Provincial Police

The response by Phuket Provincial Police, saying that the police officers were only doing their duty as traffic police, was posted online late yesterday (Nov 24).

The response came after a post on the “Phuket Sandbox – SHA Plus” Facebook page on Sunday (Nov 21) showed a photo of police officers in front of the “Kitchen” restaurant, located next door to the well known TaiPan nightclub on Rath-U-Thit 200 Pi Rd, at the intersection with Bangla Rd.

The message posted with the photo accused police officers of “destroying tourism” and quoting foreign tourists as being “robbed”, the Phuket Provincial Police noted in their response.

“Phuket Provincial Police asked for information about such cases,” the response noted.

“It is a [police] duty to set up traffic checks according to normal duties. The order [to set up the traffic check] was clearly supported properly with the intention to reduce traffic accidents,” it added.

“Some tourists are not familiar with the roads and do not know the traffic laws, and because of different laws, traditions and cultures, this may cause accidents and harm to the motorists themselves or others and the property of the tourists themselves,” the Phuket Provincial Police said.

“This is in accordance with the regulations and laws that have given them powers [to enforce traffic laws], without discrimination regradless whether [the motorist is a] Thai or foreigner, for the peace of the people as a whole,” the response said.

From October 16 to November 23 this year Phuket has seen 374,117 Thai tourists arrive on the island, of whom 2,507 committed traffic offenses, representing 0.67%, said the post.

CBRE Phuket

The number of foreigners arriving in Phuket amounted to 36,549 people, of whom 129 committed traffic offenses, accounting for 0.43%, it added.

“Statistics of deaths and injuries from traffic accidents in Phuket in 2019 saw 129 deaths, 117 serious injuries and 4,785 minor injuries,” the Provincial Police continued in their response.

“From the statistics of traffic offenses committed by tourists, it can be seen that the arrest rate of offenders is less than 1% of tourists, whether Thai or foreigners,” the response said.

“But when looking at the statistics of injuries and fatalities from traffic cases, it can be seen that the number of deaths and injuries is quite high. Therefore, I [or we] would like all citizens and tourists to be aware of the observance of traffic rules in order to reduce injuries [and harm done to] life and property.”

“Reduce risks, avoid dangers, create discipline, obey traffic rules" the post concluded.

With no single officer named as responsible for the official response to accusations of police “robbing” people, namely foreigners and tourists, the response was signed off with, “Best wishes from Phuket Provincial Police Spokesperson Team”.

Over the past week, The Phuket News has received independent reports of "heightened police activity" that appears to have been targetting foreigners in several areas across the island, including Kamala, Cherng Talay, Chalong and Rawai.

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maverick | 30 November 2021 - 10:38:08

Timothy@ enforcement of most things here is random at best, to imply that is a deliberate attempt at extortion is a bit rich, they would be stopping thousands every day of that was the case and not just once - reality is if you carry your home photo license cops have no idea if that covers a motorbike - most tourists carry nothing - silly really ! I know many expats who think they are above law! 

Wiesel | 30 November 2021 - 10:17:04

@ Timotheus: Tell me one Nation where you can drive a 125cc without license and than tell me why some tourists think they can do it in Thailand. No license, no helmet, no shirt and thats all the seller/dealers foult?? DRIVING without license is illegal and the tourists know it. 

Timothy | 30 November 2021 - 08:41:41

maveric. You finally get my point. The tourists should not be able to rent a bike without a motorbike licence. The police turn a blind eye to rental shops doing so, and then profit via this scam. After a "fine" is paid, the rider is allowed to go an his/her way.  Why not confiscate the bike and charge the rental shop a fine to get it back? Because it's a scam. You approve of scams D?...

DeKaaskopp | 29 November 2021 - 21:52:42

@Maverick  Timothy and many other on here keep whining about police fining foreigners for years now.Wondering why ? You do wrong you got fined.Oh I forgot.They feel persecuted all the time.I feel so sorry for them.Lmfao!

maverick | 29 November 2021 - 15:02:54

Timothy@ perhaps if those tourists were warned before renting bikes accident rate would also decline - so you presumably advocate authorities turning a blind eye to tourists riding around without helmets , and licenses in breach of the law is that permitted wherever you come from ?

Timothy | 29 November 2021 - 09:49:15

A lame attempt by maverick to make it sound like the police are just doing their jobs as they claim. Haha, with a smile and a thank-you as well. Fact is, they know that 100% of tourists will not have a motorbike licence and they will be collecting money from them with a bigger smile and thank you!

maverick | 28 November 2021 - 17:29:07

Kurt@ have to agree with you for a change, I have been stopped many times around Chalong and Patong, and after checking my documents sent merrily on my way with a smile and a thankyou.

christysweet | 28 November 2021 - 16:54:27

Hating opinions is a far bigger problem to some than expressing them is to me. It's so easy to blow small minds.

DeKaaskopp | 28 November 2021 - 12:40:55

Hater like Christy should be blacklisted .Why she still keeps living here is mind blowing.

Kurt | 27 November 2021 - 15:15:36

@JohnC, Well, I give the 'brown bears' the benefit of the doubt. Not all RTP officers are bad or indecent.

JohnC | 27 November 2021 - 08:44:25

@kurt. What planet are you on? If you think the brown bears cannot touch you  just because you wear the right gear while riding a motorbike. I'd like some of the drugs you're on please!!

JohnC | 27 November 2021 - 08:41:54

@Nasa12. Where did you go to school? We didn't know there was 105% payable for fines. LOL

Timothy | 26 November 2021 - 18:08:42

The serial apologists can't seem to grasp the concept that people that live here know the rules and have a motorbike licence. The tourists are targeted because they are allowed to rent a motorbike without a motorbike licence, thinking it is ok, which is an opportunity for their partners in crime to extort money from them. Why defend this practice? 

Kurt | 26 November 2021 - 16:44:42

Very much possible RTP and rental shops work together under same hood to scam foreign tourists.
Rental shops never touched.
Just have a insured motorbike, a helmet, a driving license, a face mask. Than no RTP boy in brown 
 can touch you. Simple.

maverick | 26 November 2021 - 15:56:49

Wiesel@ way too logical for the serial whingers  on this 

christysweet | 26 November 2021 - 11:45:00

It's notable when those who 'come' to Thailand who are not  full time residents 
 dismiss the views of expatriates as invalid. I have had a neighbor tell me only 'farang'  visiting is acceptable. They absolutely detest  us and if you think your live-in giggy is any different you really are in  La La land. 

Nasa12 | 26 November 2021 - 11:41:32

One of the problems is that the local police get 65% of the fine, the local government gets 35% and 5% to the government in Bangkok.  of course they hunt faranger all day long, especially the Chalong police.

Wiesel | 26 November 2021 - 11:26:21

I use Motorbike, always wear helmet, carry always correct driving license with me and dont have any problems if (rare) they stop me. keep the rules and dont give them a chance ;-)

christysweet | 26 November 2021 - 10:34:06

Thai police are THE reason this nation will never dig itself out of prostitute to the world, which is the very foundation of graft police incubate in every way. All its resources, strategic positioning and shoreline should have it the leader on ASEAN not on par w Myanmar. 

Den Alder | 26 November 2021 - 10:28:44

What's happening in Chalong, Rawai and Nai Harn these days is pure extortion. It is time to bring this to the attention of the international media. In other words: if you want to come to Phuket, bring loads of cash for the BIB.

christysweet | 26 November 2021 - 10:21:02

.....superficially polite- 'Ka' but  substantially insufferable- 'farang'. 

Foot | 26 November 2021 - 09:52:31

Back to business as usual.  Thais will never change because they don't have an education system that teaches anything but follow directions.

Timothy | 26 November 2021 - 09:18:20

Maverick, the latest expert in all things Thai using that old chestnut, "if you don't like it leave"....Follow the rules you say? Maybe Thai's should follow rules... How about not allowing rentals of motorbikes to people without a motorbike licence? It's a scam and people who haven't been here 40 years don't know it. But maybe the tourists should all go to Africa inst...

LaughingOutLoud | 26 November 2021 - 09:06:48

Please share your experiences with others back home or on social media.  And please wear your mask, the country is on fire with Covid.

maverick | 26 November 2021 - 07:25:26

We know the rules get over it or go home, it’s been the same for as long as I have been coming to Thailand over 40 years. Try Africa if you don’t like it.......


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