Patong Mayor Chalermluck Kebsub today (Dec 4) told The Phuket News’ Thai-language sister paper Khao Phuket, “In the past few days we have discussed with Phuket Governor Norraphat Plodthong about the lifeguard situation and he now acknowledges that Patong Municipality will find a budget by ourselves in hiring lifeguards for Patong Beach.
“We will start on the plan, find budgets, meet with associations and hand our proposal to the local committee to see whether they approve our plan,” she said.
“Being ready and prepared for marine safety is very important and cannot wait. This process will take time, but we will rush on this,” Mayor Chalermluck explained.
“However we want the Phuket Provincial Administration Organisation (PPAO, or OrBorJor) to stop the process of hiring lifeguards. This is in order to prevent any duplicate hiring problem.
“Now we have volunteer lifeguards looking after tourists on Patong Beach,” Mayor Chalermluck added.
Rawai Mayor Aroon Solos said, “Now Phuket is in its high season. Marine safety is very important and cannot wait. We have already informed Gov Norraphat that Rawai Municipality is ready to find a budget to hire lifeguards who have skills to provide safety for tourists.
“However, we have to receive a power of attorney letter from the OrBorJor addressed to the local administrative offices so that they give us authority to deal with this matter.
“This is in order to prevent any duplicate hiring problem,” Mayor Aroon said.
“Now we provide volunteer lifeguards who have skills in saving lives on every beaches in Rawai, but we also need lifeguards who have passed life saving training,” Mayor Aroon added.
Several of Phuket’s popular beaches have been left unprotected as of last Friday (Dec 1) after lifeguards rejected the contract for this month offered by the PPAO. (See story here.)
The Phuket News’ sister Khao Phuket tried to contact PPAO Acting Chief Watcharin Patomwatthanapong but failed.