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

DMCR steps up after tourism blast over pile of unused artificial reef blocks at Koh Racha

PHUKET: The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) will move to tidy up a pile of artificial reef blocks dumped on sea bed off Koh Racha Yai, south of Phuket, as they have been taregtted as an eyesore for foreign tourists divers.

tourismmarineconstructionenvironmentnatural-resources
By Waranya Prompinpiras

Friday 15 February 2019, 03:47PM


The unsightly pile of unused artificial reef blocks dumped on the sea bed in Kon Kare Bay at Koh Racha Yai, south of Phuket, is drawing fire from tourists. Photo: Go Eco Phuket

The unsightly pile of unused artificial reef blocks dumped on the sea bed in Kon Kare Bay at Koh Racha Yai, south of Phuket, is drawing fire from tourists. Photo: Go Eco Phuket

The news follows local marine conservation group Go Eco Phuket posting photos of the pile of concrete cubic frames, sitting piled up on the sea floor in “Bay 1” off Koh Racha, on its Facebook page on Wednesday. (See here.)

DMCR Phuket office Director Watcharin Na Thalang was unavailable to comment when called by The Phuket News.

However, Nipon Thongyoo, head of the Development of Fisheries and Marine Environment Division at the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources (DMCR) head office in Bangkok, told The Phuket News today (Feb 15) that the Go Eco Phuket post had been brought to the attention of DMCR Director-General Jatuporn Buruspat.

“Now, he has ordered me to fix this problem. I plan to do so in the next two to three weeks, but we cannot do anything right now as the wind is too strong,” Mr Nipon said.

Go Eco Phuket in their post yesterday confirmed that the pile of blocks sit at the bottom of Kon Kare Bay, on the east side of Koh Racha Yai. Local divers refer to the bay simply as “Bay 1”.

Go Eco Phuket Secretary Ittiput Schadt told The Phuket News that the pile of blocks is damaging the local dive industry.

“Foreign tourists pay money to dive at Racha Yai Island. It is a very beautiful island, but when they dive there, they see a boat that had been sunk to be a dive site and nearby they see these blocks,” he added.

“At the end of January, a foreign tourist took pictures of these blocks and posted on their own social media with the caption ‘Concrete waste of Phuket tourism’,” he said.

One pile alone comprises about 20-30 blocks, amongst about 100 blocks strewn across the sea floor, Mr Ittiput explained.

“We have asked the DMCR to at least arrange the blocks so they look better, but they just replied that there were strong wind waves on the day the blocks were dropped into the water,” he told The Phuket News.

After being informed of the news that DMCR Director-General Jatuporn Buruspat himself had seen the post and ordered for action to be taken, Mr Ittiput said, “I am glad that the DMCR gives importance to this issue

“If the DMCR is not ready to fix this, either it has not set aside the budget necessary or have the workers available immediately, they can call us for help. We believe that there are many volunteer divers who are willing to help re-arrange the blocks,” he said.

“We will arrange them according to the form specified by the DMCR. We could even stack them into a beautiful pyramid pattern,” Mr Ittiput added.

A similar structure of made from unused artificial reef blocks already stands proud on the sea floor off Koh Racha, right beside the popular “standing motorbike” attraction for divers. (See 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:

Kurt | 15 February 2019 - 16:06:31

Silently dropped on a windy day, we were hoping to forget the whole matter quietly.
Now some dammed tourists 'wake up' the whole affair.
DMCR director Watcharin not available for comment, of course not. Why I am not surprised.
What a government loose face happening. Lucky Thailand environment that there are tourists who are used to different approach in their countries.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Truck driver dodges charge for dangerous load as 33 tons of rice flip semi-trailer onto its side

.." He used canvas to cover the rice completely, so I didn't charge him".... Seems th...(Read More)


Phuket Police say investigation into Finnish girl’s death inconclusive

I hope that woman doesn't start digging out more old articles with that kind of boring subject....(Read More)


Marine Rangers: DMCR calls for volunteers to help protect marine treasures

'Before i volunteer tell me first..."You can't volunteer anyway as you would have to ge...(Read More)


Phuket braces for heavy weather, small boats advised to stay ashore

"Really people. Why always trashing the authorities? They don't control the weather! Touris...(Read More)


Phuket braces for heavy weather, small boats advised to stay ashore

This comment Really people. Why always trashing the authorities? They don't control the weather!...(Read More)


Motorcyclists seriously injured in U-turn collision

Urgent More traffic lights needed in order to make a save U-turns on Thepkrasattri Rd worry every ti...(Read More)


Marine Rangers: DMCR calls for volunteers to help protect marine treasures

I cannot imagine how a farang volunteer, even if you call him a ranger, will be able to do *anything...(Read More)


Motorcyclists seriously injured in U-turn collision

Maybe the hair was on the outside of the helmet?...(Read More)


Motorcyclists seriously injured in U-turn collision

There is not such thing as a 'deadly U-turn'. If straight going cars anticipate on U-turn t...(Read More)


Operators see potential in tourist tax

Of course Operators embrace the tourist tax. In practise, 50% for government, 50% for Operators. The...(Read More)