Thai Kingdom celebrates Royal Wedding Anniversary
April 28 marks Their Majesties 55th wedding anniversary
This year marks the 55th anniversary of the Royal Wedding of
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great and Her Majesty Queen Sirikit.
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Mom Rajawongse
Sirikit Kitayakara were married by Her Majesty Queen Sawang Vadhana, the
paternal grandmother of His Majesty, at the Sra Pathum Palace in Bangkok on
April 28, 1950.
Mom Rajawongse Sirikit, the daughter of the Thai Ambassador
to France Mom Chao Nakkhatmongkol Kitayakara and Mom Luang Bua Sanitwongse, met
the soon-to-be-King at the Thai Embassy in Paris in 1948. They were engaged to
be married at the Windsor Hotel in Lausanne, Switzerland on July 19, 1949.
They returned to Thailand during the government of Prime
Minister Field Marshal Pibul Songkhram and a stunningly beautiful marriage
ceremony was held while the Thai military forces formed to honor and salute the
Following the Royal marriage, His Majesty King Bhumibol
Adulyadej the Great ascended the throne, becoming the ninth King of Thailand in
the Chakri Dynasty with all the pomp and pageantry befitting a Royal coronation
on May 5, 1950.
Their Majesties have four children, HRH Princess Ubolratana, HRH Crown
Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn, HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, and HRH
Rabies fears grow as summer heats up
The public is afraid that a summer hotter than in previous
years will increase the number of rabies cases, and Pattaya City administration
has issued a warning about epidemics.
Pattaya’s Environment and Health Department is urging the
public to take precautions with their pets over rabies as summer begins, saying
that animals such as dogs, cats, monkeys and squirrels can become infected.
Rabies can be passed to humans from bites, scratches, licking and the body
fluids of infected animals, the infection being passed through saliva or seminal
dogs in the community are a worry to the public during summer time.
Rabies symptoms in humans begin with a feverishness,
stiffness, itching, and pain at the bite wound. This is followed by delirium,
extreme sensitivity to light and noise, convulsions, loss of consciousness, and
paralysis. If untreated, death occurs within seven days of the symptoms first
Pattaya authorities advise immediate treatment for animal
bites, setting out a number of distinct steps to follow: 1. Wash the wound with
soap and water many times. 2. Clean again with iodine and alcohol. 3. If the
wound is large and bleeding, let it bleed for a while to wash out the saliva,
which may be toxic. 4. If the animal is traceable, it should be detained for at
least 10 days. 5. If the animal dies, the head should be cut off and taken in
for examination. 6. Immediately see a doctor for treatment. 7. A wound should
only be cleaned, without stitching, so that infection can be expelled. 8.
Closely follow the doctor’s orders for taking medication.
If the wound is found to be not healing properly, the bite
victim experiencing severe pain, numbness or itching at the wound site, or a
fever, a doctor should be immediately consulted.
In their attempts to control rabies in the Pattaya area and
Koh Larn, Pattaya City authorities are continually checking the number of
domestic animals. Services such as vaccinations, purging of tapeworms, and
sterilising of dogs and cats are carried out. However, there are fears over
animals that live outside of residents’ homes. The town has many stray dogs,
for example, which live around the temples and amongst the local community.
This year is also hotter than others. Dogs and pets can be easily irritated,
which may be dangerous for the public, especially anyone unaware of the facts,
such as children.
Retailers ponder implications of proposed sim card controls
Nitikarn and Vimolrat Singnikom
Pattaya’s mobile phone and sim card retailers have
mixed reactions to the government’s attempt to regulate the sale of sim
cards. The reasoning behind the new regulation stems from recent bombs
exploding in the nation’s troubled south, where the perpetrators used
their mobile phones to detonate the devices.
retailers are divided in opinion about pending sim card regulations.
Pattaya Mail spoke to a number of businesses in
Pattaya’s Tuk.com Mall about the new regulations affecting the
pay-as-you-use sim cards.
Most, however, were unclear on the regulations and were
divided in their opinions.
Supporting the changes, one mobile retailer said,
“It’s a good idea because the government can then trace the history of
the number and prevent the criminal element from carrying out attacks. It
can also be beneficial for those who have their phones stolen for the card
can then be traced.”
Against the changes, another retailer cited that a number
of customers are under the age of 15 who do not have national ID cards.
Also, a large number of foreign clientele use the system because they do not
have to register for monthly service.
A shop owner outside Tuk.com added, “Sim cards are
cheap and many people change their numbers frequently depending on the type
of promotion. The reasoning covers many areas but if and when it becomes
law, retailers will follow accordingly.”
The new regulations have been put forward to the national communications
committee before going to parliament to make it law.
Water cannon warriors warned
Many foreigners used water cannons made from PVC pipes during
the Songkran period, and police following complaints from the public took to the
streets looking for people using these potentially dangerous water squirters.
confiscated 500 PVC water guns during the Songkran festival.
Led on April 19 by Pol Col Somnuk Chanket, Pattaya police
station superintendent, officers found foreign tourists using the guns on
passing vehicles. The perpetrators were warned that the force of water is enough
to hurt people or cause an accident, particularly to a motorcyclist, and a total
of 500 of the water cannons were confiscated and removed to the police station.
Use of the big PVC water guns is forbidden, and police say
that if a Thai or a foreign tourist is breaching this order by using one for
water games or for causing harm to others, they will immediately be detained and
The Songkran festival in Pattaya City officially started on
April 18, with a traditional water sprinkling ceremony. This was followed at 8
a.m. the next day with the Wan Lai parade, which began in front of Wat
Chaiyamongkhol in South Pattaya and continued around Pattaya City.
Thai tourists and foreigners joined in the parade, as did
employees from the bars and other Pattaya entertainment establishments, many of
them wearing what the government would refer to as inappropriate dress. Powder
was also thrown, in contravention of official directives, and there was some
lewd behaviour, but no one complained because most people consider Pattaya a
There were no problems reported between foreign tourists, but there were many
altercations between Thai tourists, most caused by drunkenness. Police officers
took the miscreants to the station to let them calm down.
Sailors receive training before Andaman posting
Readying for possibility of another tsunami
Vice Admiral Yordchai Raksamruat, commander of the Coast
Guard at Prince Jetsada Camp in Sattahip, has been appointed to oversee a sea
security training course for 40 officers from the Royal Naval Operations
Department, Royal Coast Guard, Aircraft Fighter Command, and the Navy medical
and transportation departments.
The course is part of the Royal Navy’s directive to
organise personnel, vessels, aircraft and other equipment for control and
readiness for emergency deployment in the event of another tsunami.
The group now under training will be posted to the Andaman
Sea in accordance with the government’s policy of setting up security centres.
There will be four main centres, in Ranong, Phang-Nga, Phuket and Satun; and in
seven sub-areas, namely the Surin Islands, the Similan Islands, Ban Khaolak,
Patong Beach, Adang-Rawi, Phi Phi, and Lanta Island.
In the future the centres will be expanded to cover all sea
tourism areas in the country.
This is the first training programme of its kind for Royal
Navy sea security action to help the public. It covers areas such as rescuing
drowning victims, beach lifeguard duties, first aid, diving and underwater
retrieval, inflatable boat navigation, and aircraft equipment use.
The training also provides knowledge about basic life
preservation and patient transfers.
City Hall hosts traditional Songkran ceremonies
The Eastern Seaboard traditionally celebrates Songkran later
than the rest of the country, and Pattaya administrators held the traditional
Songkran ceremonies on Monday April 18.
Senior administrators Tawit Chaisawangwong, city council
chairman and Mayor Niran Wattanasartsathorn received blessings from the ranks,
along with other senior officers.
Chaisawangwong (seated center), city council chairman and Mayor Niran
Wattanasartsathorn (seated to Tawit’s left) were the first to receive the
Wattana Chantawaranont, deputy mayor representing city hall
staff, bestowed traditional wishes and blessings on senior and older city
officers as well as led the bathing of the Buddha statue.
Over 200 children and staff from Pattaya School No 10 took
part in the ceremonies, with everyone wearing brightly coloured floral shirts
and smiling as they took turns blessing the seniors.
After the formalities, city hall staff and management continued the Songkran
festive fun, ever mindful of preserving the cultural traditions of past
Cobra Gold 2005 Joint Exercise set for May 2 – 13
Thailand, the United States, Japan, and Singapore
recently announced that they would participate in the joint Cobra Gold 2005
exercise held in Thailand from May 2-13.
Cobra Gold is a regularly scheduled joint and combined
multilateral exercise held in the Kingdom of Thailand. Cobra Gold 2005 is
the latest in a continuing series of exercises designed to promote regional
peace and security.
The exercise will combine Thai, United States, and
Singaporean armed forces under a combined/joint task force headquarters to
conduct field training, an executive level workshop and a computer-assisted
staff exercise. Japanese self-defense forces will participate in the
workshop and staff exercise.
This year’s Cobra Gold 05 is Thailand and the United
States’ 24th joint training, the 5th joint training in which Singapore
has participated, and the first time Japan has participated.
This year’s exercise will focus on capturing lessons
learned from the humanitarian assistance/disaster relief operations in
response to the December 26, 2004, earthquake and tsunami that affected
nations surrounding the Indian Ocean. Studying the lessons learned from the
tsunami disaster relief operations will allow the services to better
prepare for future relief efforts. Participating forces will also conduct
humanitarian-civil assistance projects in various locations.
Following the tsunami disaster, the Royal Thai
Government hosted the multinational disaster relief operations center at
their Royal Thai Navy air base in Utapao. Similarly, the Royal Thai
Government has invited various nations and agencies to participate in
capturing lessons learned from the tsunami relief operations during
exercise Cobra Gold 05.
In addition to the main participants, the following
countries have been invited to send personnel, in various roles: Australia,
Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Korea, Malaysia,
Maldives, New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Sri Lanka, and the United
Kingdom. There will also be significant participation by representatives
from the United Nations and the international humanitarian community.
Rust contamination of water supply breeches contract say villagers
Buyers of Sammakkee Village Project 25, a total of 180
houses on Soi Chamchuree in Sattahip, are making a claim against the project
owner over the water supply. Under an agreement, the villagers pay for water
drawn from an artesian well, but they have been unable to use it because the
water is contaminated with rust.
Sattahip district spokesman Pheng Buahorm listened to the
villagers’ problems. He explained that a piped water supply is not yet
available, because piping has yet to be laid to the village, and there is not
enough water for distribution. The Provincial Waterworks Authority has promised
to look for a solution.
In Sattahip there are many village projects being built to
accommodate Royal Navy families. Buyers are warned to study their contract and
its details closely before purchasing public utilities. In the event of a
contract being breached by the village project owner, a complaint should be
filed with the Consumer Protection Department.
Police bag fake Vuitton vendor
Pattaya police raided a South Pattaya bag shop on Monday
afternoon and arrested the owner for intellectual property rights infringement.
Officers found the entire shop full of Louis Vuitton copied bags and
confiscated 234 bags and fashion accessories, all fake copies of the Louis
Vuitton brand name.
Kanya Polsaen, 18, the owner confessed everything to police
saying that there was more to be found at the store near her shop. Police
obtained a search warrant and raided the storeroom, finding a further 234 bags
and fashion accessories with the Louis Vuitton brand name.
Kanya was charged with breaking intellectual property laws and illegally
selling banned merchandise. She was remanded into custody pending court
Officials continue ID checks at city entertainment venues
Senior police officers from Pattaya and Banglamung
carried out simultaneous raids on four entertainment venues at around 1 a.m.
on April 21. Officers were on the lookout for underage patrons and other
The first venue to be checked was The Cottage on Pattaya
Third Road, where they found one 17-year old youth on the premises. The
manager was detained for allowing underage customers in the venue.
Across the road, the Blue Chili Pub was investigated, and
everything found to be in order. Next police entered the Susie Bar on Soi 4,
where again everything appeared in order.
Police then moved back to Third Road, where they entered
the Forte Karaoke Bar. An ID check revealed seven staff aged 16-17, as well
as a few who were not carrying ID cards, which is an offence.
The manager was arrested for allowing minors to work in
Those without identification had their details recorded
and were fined 100 baht, as was the underage staff. The manager, however,
faces stiffer penalties as a result of the infringements with the venue
likely to be temporarily closed as a result.
More raids and inspections are expected to take place in
the near future.
British driver injured
in collision with motorcycle
Motorcycle driver flees the scene
Sattahip police on April 21 received a report of an
accident involving a motorcycle and a foreigner’s car at Samakkee hill on
Sukhumvit Third Road, at the U-turn to Bangsaray Beach.
Officers went to the scene with a security officer from
the Rotchana Thammasathan Sattahip foundation, and found a British man, Ian
Richard Mambow, aged 50, who was having trouble breathing.
His green Peugeot 406 was damaged and had come to rest in
the middle drainage ditch of the road, and a green Suzuki motorcycle was
also in the middle of the road. The motorcycle belonged to Santi Raksawong,
aged 35, from Sattahip, who had fled the scene.
Mambow had been returning to Pattaya from Rayong. The
motorcycle had cut off up at the U-turn, and he had been unable to stop in
time. The car hit the motorcycle, then a palm tree in the middle drainage
Mambow was transferred to Bangkok Pattaya Hospital for
Police seize youth
carrying loaded gun
Police Lt Col Sutham Chaoseethong and other officers were
on patrol in the Kao Rai karaoke bar area on Pattaya Third Road around 3pm
on April 15 when they noticed a suspicious looking man sitting in a
restaurant. The police stopped their car and went to investigate.
Siri was arrested for illegally carrying a loaded weapon in a public place.
They discovered that Narin Siri, a 19-year old from
Pichit, was carrying a loaded 20-calibre handgun and two spent cartridges.
The police kept them as evidence before transferring him for further
investigation to the Pattaya police station.
Narin admitted that he had bought the gun and ammunition
from his friend for 1,200 baht for the purpose of protecting himself.
Previously he had a dispute with a man named Art (unknown surname), who is
allegedly a well-known miscreant at the Kao Rai Karaoke Bar. Narin said that
Art hit him and then threatened to shoot him. He was waiting for Art to
clear up unfinished business.
The police charged him with illegal possession of a gun and ammunition,
and with taking a firearm into a public place.
Teenage ride-by snatchers arrested
Two teens, aged 16 and 17, were arrested by police as the
pair fled the scene of their last ride-by theft. Officers caught the two
boys red-handed on Central Pattaya Road around 1 a.m. on April 17 in
possession of the mobile phone they had stolen from Ladda Prethires, 18,
just minutes before on Beach Road.
Police took the two youths, who cannot be named, to Soi 9
where Ladda positively identified them and her 20,000 baht Nokia phone.
Ladda thanked police and then took off her shoes. But before she could beat
the thieves, police stopped her. She then proceeded to give the pair a
verbal lambasting, calling them good for nothing animals.
The pair confessed to their crime, saying that it was
easy pickings and they had committed numerous offences before being caught.
The teens were transferred to the inspector’s desk for processing and jail
Teen shot as
jealousy sparks karaoke fight
Jealousy provoked a fight in a Pattaya Third Road karaoke
bar, leaving a teenager with gunshot wounds. The melee erupted when rival
groups of youths were vying for the affections of karaoke staff, and spilled
out onto the road where the shooting took place.
Police arrived at the Puenpueng Karaoke Bar just after
midnight on Monday morning to find 16-year-old Nopaporn Kooharwail on the
ground in agony after suffering a wound to the leg from a Thai-made pistol
that fired shotgun cartridges.
The injured youth was rushed to the Pattaya Memorial
Hospital where doctors removed the pellets.
Investigations revealed that two groups were in the bar
when the fight broke out. When Nopaporn ran outside, one teen pulled out a
gun and shot him.
Police investigating the shooting discovered that the
group of teens responsible is wanted for numerous offences. The gang leader,
known as Art, is wanted for similar incidents in the past. Art is described
as having a shaven head and is said to be a danger to the community. Police
are trying to trace the gang before more shootings occur.
Drug user arrested at police
A check-point set up by police in Soi Bongkot, an area
well known for dealings in illicit drugs, resulted in the arrest of a drug
user on April 20.
Officers were inspecting motorcycles, and stopped one man
speeding along the soi. Aphisit Sueasart, 19, was found to be carrying six
methamphetamine pills, aka ya ba, in a small plastic bag when police stopped
He was immediately taken to Soi 9 where he told police
that he purchased the pills in the Chatngaew sub-district and had intended
to use them with friends in Pattaya.
Aphisit was charged with possession of a class one
illegal drug and remanded into custody pending court proceedings.
The same checkpoint also netted over 40 illegally
modified and unregistered motorcycles.
Editorial: Helmet law saves lives
As the national road safety campaign continues, accident
statistics back up the need for adherence to road regulations. The helmet
law, in particular, is being, and should be, enforced for both motorcycle
riders and pillion passengers. We should even take this one step further and
require that not only do motorcycle riders and pillion passengers wear
helmets, but that they wear safe helmets that would actually protect them in
an accident. To paraphrase the good Dr Iain, if you think you have a 100
baht head, then wear a 100 baht helmet...
Many see the wearing of a helmet as an annoyance,
impinging on their right to choose, so much so that when confronted by
police they argue the point. Yet during Songkran, large numbers of accidents
occurred, many with incurring severe injuries due to people not wearing
The major causes of these accidents were drunk driving
and pure negligence, particularly so among the youth sector. And although
the numbers were high, unfortunately they were not much different to
previous years. (Over the 2004 New Year period, for instance, there were
18,803 accidents reported with 612 deaths and 25,580 injured, 20,735 of
which resulted from motorcycle accidents).
Thailand implemented helmet laws in 1993, announcing they
would be in force throughout the country by 1997. Even though road deaths
were reduced by 27 percent, it was evident that this wasn’t enough. The
need for leaving motorcycle headlights on was then being considered, as
research shows that turning motorbike headlights on during the day reduces
the potential for accidents. When Japan implemented the policy they had a 40
percent reduction in accidents. Malaysia experienced a 29 percent reduction.
Thailand, however, is still in the throes of dealing with the new
regulations, which began with a campaign in Songkhla between August and
October in 2003. After the headlights campaign began in Songkhla, the road
toll figures there were reduced from 26 to 18 out of every hundred.
Chonburi traffic officials are clamping down on people
not following the helmet and lights-on laws and dishing out fines. The
results of such actions have shown a 90 percent compliance with a
significant drop in accident rates.
With all this evidence, it is obvious that everyone using
the road, whether during festivals or any “normal” time of the year,
would benefit from following the rules. This wouldn’t take any extra work
or effort, as it just involves a tweak in attitude. This is in everyone’s
best interest, as “it is better not to see the coffin at all than change
after the tears have flowed.”
Hundreds attend Buddha casting ceremony at Wat Sawangfah
Hundreds of people joined dignitaries at the special
casting of a “Luang Por Sothorn” Buddha statue at Sawangfah Temple in
North Pattaya. The event was part of the annual Thai New Year celebrations
and merit making ceremonies held over four days. On April 17 the casting
began with monks and members of the public performing prayers.
ceremonial casting of the new Buddha statue was a site to behold.
Phra Nattawut, Sawangfah Prutthram Temple Abbot said,
“Once the casting of this image is complete, the statue will be positioned
outside the new Kuti (monk’s residence) for everyone to pay their homage
and respects to.”
The abbot added that the casting of the new 39-inch wide
bronze statue would be completed in approximately a month’s time.
Gen Kanit Permsap, deputy chief aide-decamp to HM the King, Mayor Niran
Wattanasartsathorn and Chonburi MP Chanyuth Hengtrakul presided over the
casting ceremonies as honoured guests.