THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Phuket Poll: Should tour guides or tourists be charged for coral damage?

PHUKET: The past few months have seen coral preservation efforts at key tourist dive sites and coral reef attractions for day-trippers in and around Phuket ramped up to the ridiculous and shift target from the tourists themselves to the tour guides and tour companies that lead them.

opinionmarinenatural-resourcesenvironmenttourismpolice
By The Phuket News

Tuesday 28 March 2017, 12:28PM


Should tourists or their guides and tour companies be held responsible for damage to Phuket's coral reefs? Photo: The Phuket News / file

Should tourists or their guides and tour companies be held responsible for damage to Phuket's coral reefs? Photo: The Phuket News / file

The drive began in earnest in late January, when officials from the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) Phuket office posted signs at Koh Racha Yai’s three main bays warning tour guides and tourists of the consequences of breaking marine conservation rules. (See story here.)

After a couple of “misunderstandings”, Chinese tourist Huang Yongjia, 35, was caught with two baby Parrotfish in a plastic bottle and was charged and fined B100,000 for his infraction. (See story here.)

Officials tried the same with 53-year-old Russian tourist Olga Smirnova, but as she did not have the B100,000, she spent two nights in police lockup while awaiting trial for feeding bread to fish at Racha Yai. (See story here.)

However, after Ms Smirnova’s dire situation, held legal hostage in Thailand while awaiting trial and sentencing of a token fine for her misdemeanour, officials changed tack and started focusing on tour guides and tour operators.

Nonthasak Marine and one of their guides came into question for allegedly breaking off a piece of coral to kill a sea urchin in front of tourists, a claim the company strongly denies, and an illegal guide now stands accused of standing on corals at Koh Racha. (See stories here and here.)

To this, The Phuket News asks readers in our latest online poll, “Who should be held responsible environmental damage – the tourists who break the rules, or the tour guides and the companies that hire them?”

Responses available are:

BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET

1. Tourists should be held responsible for their own behaviour. If a tourist breaks the rules, he or she is the only one to be held responsible, not the guide.

2. Guides should be held fully responsible, not tourists, as it’s the guide’s job to ensure tourists are safe and do not break environmental-protection laws.

3. Both tourists and their guides should be held responsible, and both should be charged.

To vote in the poll, click here.

The poll will close at midnight Sunday, April 9.

If your preferred response is not available, feel free to add it in the comments below.

To see the results of our previous poll, asking “Should Patong night venues stay open later?”, click here.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

martin@pertinax.asia | 28 March 2017 - 17:23:20

Of course it should be the Tour Guide and the Tour Company who should be fully responsible.
How can i.e. a Chinese Visitor know the rules and regulations in Thailand when they are coming for a 4 days 3 nights stay. The Guide have to inform the Tourist what they can do and not to do.

Kurt | 28 March 2017 - 14:49:20

Thai are so focused/ fascinated by only having thai tour guides.
Ok, I respect that thinking/setting.
But that doubles the thai tour guide responsibility of what his foreign tourist group is doing.
The thai tour guide knows everything what is ok or not ok about his foreign tourist tour group is doing.
When a tourist in his tour group is doing something wrong the thai tour guide should be held ...

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Aircraft maintenance worker, 22, dies after motorbike hits parked bus

What is the minimum distance a car, truck, bus is allowed to park before/after a curve?...(Read More)


Family matters: The mother-son team behind a new cafe in Chalong

It might be helpful if you told us where this cafe is as I'd like to try it....(Read More)


Aircraft maintenance worker, 22, dies after motorbike hits parked bus

Why are such "small" vehicles, a bus, allowed to park, on the road, no wonder people drive...(Read More)


Disaster officials issue fire warning as small wildfires break out

Wonder how much water is still available on Phuket island for fire fighting. Not mentioning the nee...(Read More)


Disaster officials issue fire warning as small wildfires break out

Now, from Chalong, at 16:15 hrs clearly to see on the hill, right below Big Buddha, rubbish burning,...(Read More)


Aircraft maintenance worker, 22, dies after motorbike hits parked bus

... Fearful, the driver of the parked bus fled the scene...leaving a bag with all his identifying ma...(Read More)


Election Commission issues defamation warning

Imagine if the developed world had such laws. This does raise the question as to how to campaign eff...(Read More)


Power outage in Thalang

And nothing change to country 4.0 doings. Continue the old way of keeping cables at poles, instead u...(Read More)


Phuket health officials, police unite to enforce Makha Bucha alcohol ban

Why not have all non-'budhists' wear arm-bands with a distinguishing logo? They could be giv...(Read More)


Taxi blames oil spill for wipeout

Unless one wants to live in a Police state, where everything and everyone is under surveillance, the...(Read More)