On 9th April 2014 at Rassada Port, Phuket Governor – Maitree Intusut presided over the opening of a special centre which aims to prevent and reduce road and marine accidents over the Songkran Festival 2014 period. Also in attendance at the opening were Phuket Vice Governor – Jamroen Thippayapongthada, Chief of the Phuket Office of Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation – San Jantarawong, Phuket Marine Office Director – Puripat Teerakulpisut, Heads of Government agencies, Phuket Marine Police and local media.
Khun Maitree said “The aim of opening this operations center is to prevent and reduce marine and road accidents during the 2014 Songkran Festival. It is also here to enhance the security of everyone in Phuket during this period. It is hoped that during our 7 day campaign that both marine and road accidents will remain at zero.”
Along with the centre, the police will be implementing 10 measures to ensure there are no accidents and that everyone is safe:
1. 12 checkpoints in the 3 districts
2. Sheriffs will be in direct command
3. Police checks to increase by 20%
4. Use of technology at 4 critical speed points
5. Rescue teams to turn on lights at high risk areas
6. Public bus drivers to be breathalysed
7. Inspection of tour buses
8. Additional police officers
9. 100% alcohol-free zoned Songkran play areas
10. Legislations to control alcohol
With regards to the prevention and reduction in marine accidents, both the Third Naval Area and Phuket Marine Police have been assigned to the Office of Phuket Port to ensure all security measures are in place to take care of the incoming and outgoing boats at the piers. Boats will be checked to ensure they are not carrying excess weight and that all people on board are wearing a life jacket. They will also provide regular officers to be on-hand at all Phuket’s piers 24 hours a day.