Tourist boat capsizes in Trang Sea, one dead and several injuredLegacy

A tragic incident unfolded yesterday at 4.30pm when a longtail tourist boat capsized near the Pak Meng Bridge in the Trang Sea, leaving 14 individuals adrift, including a 68 year old woman who sadly drowned. The accident took place approximately 2 kilometres from the pier at Pom Jatukham area, Mai Fat Subdistrict, Sikao District, Trang Province.

The boat, carrying 11 Thai tourists consisting of seven adults and four children, along with the boatman, a tour guide, and an additional crew member, encountered trouble as it was returning from a sea excursion. All passengers were wearing life jackets when the incident occurred, and they were eventually assisted by a passing speedboat before being brought ashore. Medical teams from Sikao Hospital and local rescue units provided immediate aid and transferred the injured to the hospital.

Among the victims was 68 year old Atchara Triprasertsakul, from Songkhla Province, who lost her life. Five others suffered injuries due to water inhalation. Preliminary reports suggest that the tourists were related to each other and divided into three families.

Following the accident, the police launched an investigation to ascertain the cause. The boatman, 50 year old Napadol Hayang, reported that the ropes tied to the boat’s steering controls snapped, causing the vessel to lose stability.

This led to the passengers shifting to one side, resulting in the boat capsizing. Around 7.50pm at Sikao Hospital, the Governor of Trang Province, along with other officials, visited the four surviving tourists who were still receiving medical care. One child was transferred to Trang Hospital but unfortunately passed away later.

The governor expressed his condolences and ensured that the initial response by the medical teams was swift. He stated that although the crew did their best, the death of a passenger implies a level of culpability.

Boat capsized

The boat had all the necessary permits, registrations, and insurance. The company responsible for the boat has been instructed to take care of the compensation for the deceased.

Currently, the police are thoroughly investigating the incident, confirming that the boat was in compliance with all regulations. Meanwhile, the governor advised tourists to postpone their sea excursions, given the late summer season, impending rainy season, and unpredictable weather conditions that could cause strong undercurrents, reported KhaoSod.

The governor also highlighted that, according to the survivors, the boat was almost ashore when a manoeuvre caused the passengers to lean to one side. Although the boat owner mentioned that warnings about weight distribution had been given, they went unheeded. While the boat was new and met service standards, operating during this period was not advisable, especially since it was not designed to handle such conditions as larger vessels.

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Author: Nattapong Westwood