Pattaya to spend 31 million baht on boat, water sports buoys

Friday, 02 May 2014 From Issue Vol. XXII No. 18 By  Warunya Thongrod

Pattaya plans to spend 31 million baht to install 30 buoys to regulate the speed and course of speedboats and designate specific areas for water sports other than swimming.

Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh met with top Marine Department officials at city hall April 24 to review the master plan for buoys for both Bali Hai Pier and Koh Larn.

Proposed buoy areas for swimming, banana boats, jet-skis and parachuting in Pattaya Bay.Proposed buoy areas for swimming, banana boats, jet-skis and parachuting in Pattaya Bay.

Thongchai Pongvichai, the department’s director of ship standards, said four speed-limit buoys and six navigational buoys are planned, as well as 21 buoys to demark zones for jet skis, banana boats, parasailing, scuba diving and sea walking.

Marine Department Director Raewat Potriang said the buoy plan is part of a five-phase program demanded by Chonburi Province officials following a string of marine accidents stretching back to the beginning of 2013. The plan covers water zone regulation, supervision and control of water traffic, integration between public and private sectors, increasing awareness of safety, and reforming laws.

Ronakit noted that Pattaya already has installed temporary speed-control buoys at Bali Hai Pier and suggested that permanent markers be installed immediately, even before the entire project’s budget has been approved.

“The entire project is going to take a long time to complete, so Pattaya must install buoys to control speeds in four areas first: two areas at Bali Hai covering entrance and exit, and two areas at Koh Larn’s Cape Hua Kod, also covering entrance and exit,” the deputy mayor said. “Operators need to see we actually are doing this.”

As for the rest of the buoys, Ronakit said a committee will be set up to draft the requirements for the buoy design and obtain a price from the Marine Department. The funds will then be requested from the city council, which already has been authorized to spend up to 30.9 million baht on the project by the Budget Bureau.

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