THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET
THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
The Phuket News Novosti Phuket Khao Phuket

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

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.

QSI International School Phuket

“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.

CAPTCHA

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
Body of second missing Filipino found off Phuket

Koh Keow (Green Island) is 1 of 2 small islands in the south of Phuket next to Promthep Cape. Isnt i...(Read More)


Phuket readies for HM King’s birthday

Fascinated, it is clearly mentioned that no ban on alcohol sales has been announced SO FAR. What n...(Read More)


Cross Hotels & Resorts inks deal for new Phuket venue

To be clear, they are taking over an existing hotel, not adding a new one to Patong's already th...(Read More)


Phuket Poll: Environmental damage, prices too high

And what would Mr.K like officials to do about those high prices? Force everyone to sell food at low...(Read More)


PM Prayut calls out Phuket van driver for overcharging Aussie tourists

What has this water shortage talk from Mr.K to do with this article? And as he knows that there wil...(Read More)


Phuket airport van B3k fare ‘just a misunderstanding’, say police

As Mr.K knows the prices so well,maybe he could tell us what the published prices are at those desk...(Read More)


Phuket Opinion: Hit the dog

No one would deny that this was an appalling thing to do, but if you want to talk about legal ramifi...(Read More)


Phuket readies for HM King’s birthday

Err Capn Jack READ the last sentence there is CLEARLY mention of it....(Read More)


Bridging Supply: Officials reveal B3.5bn proposal to resolve island’s water shortage woes

Ahhhh Dkk- still as arrogant as ever I read. I've been waiting years for YOUR constructive comme...(Read More)


Phuket Poll: Environmental damage, prices too high

Great Phuket Poll. Now waiting for response of Phuket Officialdom as the outcome is significant. Sic...(Read More)