Two Phuket tour boat captains charged for deadly collision

Photo: Royal Thai Marine Police

A Thai court has charged two local tour boat captains with reckless behaviour causing death and injury after their vessels figured in a collision that had also left two people dead and 22 others injured in the waters off the resort island of Phuket.

Phuket City Police officials said that Mr Anusorn Duangkiet and Mr Atsarawut Suden were both criminally liable for the incident, which occurred at around 07:50 local time on Monday, February 10.

An investigation revealed that Mr Atsarawut’s ALP 111 was laden with tourists and sailing out of the Phuket Boat Lagoon when it struck Mr Anusorn’s Payan 5 as it was about to enter the nearby Royal Phuket Marina to pick up passengers. Although Payan 5‘s bow became heavily damaged in the resulting collision, the vessel continued to stay afloat.

A 12-year-old boy and a six-year-old girl, both of whom were Russian nationals and passengers on ALP 111, died of injuries suffered in the collision.

Twenty-two other passengers on ALP 111 sustained non-life-threatening injuries while 15 others, including the accused and two other crewmembers, were unharmed.

The two boat captains were arrested following the incident but have since posted bail set at THB 150,000 (US$4,820) each. Both are required to present themselves at the Phuket Provincial Court within seven days for proper legal proceedings to commence.

The defendants continue to deny any wrongdoing in the incident. If found guilty, they could be banned from operating boats for up to two years.

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