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Pattaya Daily News

03 February 2013 :: 13:02:32 pm 71403

Phuket boat ordeal owners describe accident as ‘force majeure’

Tour company Andawaree Co Ltd, which runs tours to Phi Phi from Chalong Pier, held a press conference yesterday (February 1) about the accident on January 30.
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PHUKET – February 1, 2013 On the day, five tourists were injured when the speedboat they were travelling in hit strong waves, throwing the tourists up to one metre high in the air.

On Thursday the most injured tourist, 24 year old Australian Tegan Larin, recounted her experience to The Phuket News. Read that story here.

Kritsada and Omduan Pichetpongsanon, owners of Andawaree Co Ltd, said that the waves were always strong in the area where the accident occurred, but that they were exceptionally strong on January 30.

Mr Kritsada also said that the boat driver is a professional, fully licensed driver with almost 20 years experience. The tour guide that day also added that the driver had in fact averted a bigger accident.

“If the driver did not increase speed when he did, the accident would have been more serious. He did it because he had to fight with the wave instead of let the wave move the boat. I think he knew what he had to do in that situation,” Maneerat Tinanop said.

Mr Kritsada said that after the accident, the driver immediately turned the boat back to Chalong Pier and called for an ambulance.

Mr Kritsada described the accident as a force majeure and said it was fortunate that no-one was more seriously injured. He added that the company is compensating all injured tourists for the costs of their medical treatment.

Pol Lt Col Chatchai Sakdee of the Phuket Marine Police said that after investigating, they could confirm that both the boat and driver were licensed.

“The accident was not due to any carelessness on the part of the driver as he has great experience of driving boats and the big wave that day was completely unexpected,” Lt Col Chatchai said.

View the original story on The Phuket News here.

Category : Thailand News

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