City combats slobs to keep neighborhoods clean

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While Pattaya residents often point the blame at city bureaucrats for failing to address pollution issues, many Thais need only look in the mirror to see where the real problem lies.

Throughout Pattaya, ad hoc trash dumps like one on Soi Arunothai highlighted by the Pattaya Mail in recent weeks, mar the image of the city. In many cases, such as on Soi Chularat near the Pattaya Indoor Sports Arena, thoughtless residents are the ones polluting their own environment, carelessly tossing trash into vacant lots expecting others to pick up after them.

The pile of trash keeps getting bigger on Soi Chularat near the Pattaya Indoor Sports Arena, where thoughtless residents are polluting their own environment by carelessly tossing trash into vacant lots whilst expecting others to pick up after them. The pile of trash keeps getting bigger on Soi Chularat near the Pattaya Indoor Sports Arena, where thoughtless residents are polluting their own environment by carelessly tossing trash into vacant lots whilst expecting others to pick up after them.

Preecha Benjaphra, who lives near the growing mountain of construction materials, rotting food, plastic bags, bottles and even old mattresses said neighborhood denizens have been throwing out trash illegally there for more than a year. City workers have come in occasionally to clean up and post “no dumping” signs, but with no effect.

The 37-year-old noted that a landowner opposite the makeshift landfill has worsened the pollution problem by occasionally hiring trucks to push the eyesore into a water source behind the lot.

Pattaya Sanitation Office spokesman Sunya Thupthimsri said the Soi Chularat problem is not unique. The city, he said, does what it can to keep streets and vacant lots clean, but if Thais have so little regard for the law and the environment, there’s little that can be done. He urged people to give up their selfish, slobbish ways and put littler in its place.

He noted anyone caught dumping garbage illegally is subject to a 2,000 baht fine. Anyone witnessing such acts can call the city Call Center at 1337.