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  • Late-night driver killed in Sattahip crash
    A woman returning from a late-night flight died after crashing her car into a tree in Sattahip. Rattiyakorn Satjung, 37, died at the scene of the accident on Sukhumvit Road in front of MG Car Center in Najomtien around 3:30 a.m. Jan. 15. Her Bangkok-registered Ford Fiesta first hit a guidepost before careening into a […]
    Rattiyakorn Satjung perished in a one vehicle accident on Sukhumvit Road in Sattahip.

    A woman returning from a late-night flight died after crashing her car into a tree in Sattahip.

    Rattiyakorn Satjung, 37, died at the scene of the accident on Sukhumvit Road in front of MG Car Center in Najomtien around 3:30 a.m. Jan. 15.

    Her Bangkok-registered Ford Fiesta first hit a guidepost before careening into a Burmese padauk tree. Rattiyakorn’s luggage and passport were ejected from the car.

    Police speculated that Rattiyakorn had just returned from overseas on a late-night flight and fell asleep while driving home.

    20 January 2020
    Featured
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284834
  • What do TB, immigration, and retirement living have in common?
    Darren McGarry from Key Visa, speaking on a subject of great interest to Expats, brings his PCEC audience up to date on current Thai Immigration issues.They all were topics at the Sunday, January 12, meeting of the Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC), which was to a packed house with about 150 members and guests in […]

    Darren McGarry from Key Visa, speaking on a subject of great interest to Expats, brings his PCEC audience up to date on current Thai Immigration issues.They all were topics at the Sunday, January 12, meeting of the Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC), which was to a packed house with about 150 members and guests in attendance.

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    The first speaker was Dr. Thundon Ngamprasertchai, MD, with the Faculty of Tropical Medicine at Mahidol University to talk about his research study and explain why the meeting lobby had several of his staff gathering information and taking blood samples from those that wished to participate in the study. His short presentation was followed by the main speaker, Darren McGarry from Key Visa Thailand who spoke on the topic “The Latest Visa Opportunities and Challenges in Thailand”. Last but not least was Dr. Wanapa Intaprasert, PhD, to give another short talk about Pattaya’s Homerly Senior Living facility.

    Dr. Thundon Ngamprasertchai, MD., an infectious disease doctor with the Faculty of Tropical Medicine at Mahidol University, explains latent TB, its consequences, and the purpose of his Research Study; inviting those attending to participate in the study.

    Dr. Thundon is an infectious diseases doctor conducting a research project related to Latent Tuberculosis (TB). He explained the project’s primary focus is on TB in expatriates, particularly in an early stage called “latent tuberculosis.” He then described what TB is and its prevalence in Thailand. TB is an airborne bacterium that infects organs, usually the lungs, and can be quite fatal if not treated. In 2018, 1.5 million died of the disease and it is the single highest cause of death to HIV positive people. Thailand is a country with a high propensity for the disease. He mentioned that while active TB will have symptoms, latent TB will not and can only be detected by a blood test. He pointed out that while latent TB does not necessarily result in one getting an active case, a percentage will develop an active case.

    Latent TB can only be detected by a blood test that normally costs around 4,000 baht, but for those that wished to participate in the study, they would receive the test for free. If it reveals the person has latent TB, they will be notified in about one month for a follow-up test. He emphasized that all information is kept strictly confidential. He reported back later that there were about 60 Expats from the meeting that were participating.

    Darren McGarry, after his presentation and to allow ample time for an expected lively question and answer session, followed the last speaker. Here he listens to one of the many questions he received.

    Next up was Darren, a British Expat with over 15 years of experience as a visa consultant in Thailand. His company is Key Visa and he is the driving force behind the company. He began by noting that in 2019, Immigration seems to be toning things down a bit to encourage tourism. In 2018 they began being stricter and increasing enforcement. This saw closer scrutiny of those arriving on Visa Exempt and Tourist visas that have many visits and spend a lot of time in Thailand as they were suspected as working rather than being a real tourist. Further, Immigration’s actions in asking embassies in providing monthly income certification letters to verify the income information which resulted in 3 major embassies no longer issuing such letters (UK, USA, and Australia), to the frustration of many of their Expat citizens that relied on them. This, along with the appreciation of the baht against Expats’ home currency, plus new requirements for health insurance if on a Category O-A Visa, has frustrated many Expats. As a result, many are choosing to go elsewhere.

    Generally, the present position on immigration is to continue to enforce requirements for those coming into Thailand. Entry by Visa Exempt at land borders are limited to twice in a calendar year. Fingerprint checks have been instituted at the airport points of entry and scrutiny will continue for those that frequently enter, but may be less stringent. Darren noted that this past year, from 50 to 60 foreigners a day have been sent back to their home countries, but this is now more like 10. He also recommended, especially for off shore workers who visit regularly, to obtain a Tourist visa in lieu of entering as Visa Exempt.

    In conclusion, he offered some observations of what in his view could be in store for the future, but cautioned that these were just speculation on his part.

    MC Bob Smith presents the PCEC’s Certificate of Appreciation to Darren McGarry for his informative update on Thai Immigration issues.

    Darren was followed by Dr. Wanapa who is Senior Director at Homerly Senior Living. She has a PhD in the field of Special Education from the University of Alberta, Canada; a Masters in social work and community psychology from West Virginia University (USA) and University of New Brunswick (Canada). She says she combines her knowledge of psycho-social and physical health into creating a place that you may want to call home.

    Dr. Wanapa Intaprasert, PhD, talks about the various services available to residents at Pattaya’s Homerly Senior Living facility. Further, pointing out that the facility is not only available for long term residents, but is also available for shorter stays when needed by those recuperating from surgery or serious illness.

    She presented several slides as she spoke about the Homerly Senior Living facility and what services they offer with emphasis on what makes their living arrangements unique, such as: state of the art salt water pool therapy, fitness and garden facility, individualized exercises and meal plans, daily recreational and social activities, etc. They also offer a shuttle service for their guests and on-site medical are provided. There are four room options the premier room offering comfortable seating and an in room refrigerator. The average monthly cost for staying ranges around 50,000 baht a month more or less depending on the room (40,000 for a couple). She pointed out that the facility is available for long term stay or shorter stay if recuperating from surgery or illness that requires special care.

    Member Ren Lexander interviews Dr. Wanapa Intaprasert about her presentation on Homerly Senior Living facility. To view the You Tube video, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANXh1ZxcQwc.

    After the presentation, the MC brought everyone up to date on the upcoming club events and others of interest. This was followed by the Open Forum where questions are asked and answered about Expat living in Thailand, especially Pattaya. For more information about the PCEC, visit their website at: www.pcec.club.

    19 January 2020
    Featured
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284816
  • Sattahip police raid gold-trading on fraud charges
    Sattahip police raided an unsecured gold-trading firm that closed in December, defrauding its customers of 800 million baht. Police chief Pol. Col. Panya Dumlek and district officials stormed the Sattahip Market head office of Ausiris Sattahip Gold and Futures Co. Jan. 15, confiscating computer hard drives, receipts, financial documents, customer lists and two one-ton safes […]
    Sattahip police raid Ausiris Sattahip Gold and Futures Co. unsecured gold-trading firm for allegedly defrauding customers of 800 million baht.

    Sattahip police raided an unsecured gold-trading firm that closed in December, defrauding its customers of 800 million baht.

    Police chief Pol. Col. Panya Dumlek and district officials stormed the Sattahip Market head office of Ausiris Sattahip Gold and Futures Co. Jan. 15, confiscating computer hard drives, receipts, financial documents, customer lists and two one-ton safes that could not immediately be opened.

    The evidence was packed up and sent to the Central Police Forensic Science Division.

    Panya said Ausiris had been operating for a decade with four branches that offered gold for sale at below-market rates with the firm holding the precious metal as investment. When the selling price rose, investors could choose to sell.

    But Ausiris sold more gold than it actually held and when profit distribution payments were delayed in mid-December customers began pulling out their gold. The run on the “bank” left Ausiris unable to meet its obligations and the owners closed Dec. 23 with 800 million baht in investments left on its books.

    Hundreds of customers file complaints at Sattahip Police Station and the Pattaya Provincial Court issued the search warrant in the newly opened fraud case.

    19 January 2020
    Pattaya News
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284830
  • Unable to curb illegal dumping, Pattaya allows anything to be put in city trash cans
    Despite years of effort, the city has been unable to make a dent in the wave of illegal dumping of garbage, large items and construction waste on roadsides, public land and private lots.Pattaya has removed all restrictions on what can be disposed of in city trash cans in an attempt to end the plague of […]
    Despite years of effort, the city has been unable to make a dent in the wave of illegal dumping of garbage, large items and construction waste on roadsides, public land and private lots.

    Despite years of effort, the city has been unable to make a dent in the wave of illegal dumping of garbage, large items and construction waste on roadsides, public land and private lots.Pattaya has removed all restrictions on what can be disposed of in city trash cans in an attempt to end the plague of illegal dumping.

    Despite years of effort, the city has been unable to make a dent in the wave of illegal dumping of garbage, large items and construction waste on roadsides, public land and private lots.

    So in last-ditch effort, Deputy Mayor Manote Nongyai announced that old furniture, tree branches, rubble and construction debris can now be disposed of in individual and public garbage cans that will be collected on a regular schedule.

    Like most cities, Pattaya has prohibited large items, industrial waste and other hazardous items from being disposed in regular garbage cans. But many firms and individuals refused to pay for disposal, so they just dumped their waste in the dead of night on vacant land or roadsides.

    Given the new leniency, Manote said the city will be even harsher on those that continue to dump illegally. First offenses will still carry a warning, but second and subsequent offenses will carry heavy fines, he said.

    Also, to address the additional trash being put in cans, Pattaya’s Environment Department is giving out free composting tanks and asking residents to dispose of organic waste in those and turn it into fertilizer.

    19 January 2020
    Pattaya News
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284825
  • Pattaya water shortages likely avoided by diversions, gov’t says
    Government agencies and utilities are diverting water and rerouting pipes to bring enough water to the Pattaya area that should prevent previously anticipated water shortages this summer. Loading… Alongkorn Ponlaboot, advisor to the Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives, and Taveesak Thanadechopol, deputy director-general of the Irrigation Department, met with farmers and industry leaders at Irrigation […]
    Alongkorn Ponlaboot, advisor to the Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives, said government agencies and utilities are diverting water and rerouting pipes to bring enough water to Pattaya that should prevent previously anticipated water shortages this summer.

    Government agencies and utilities are diverting water and rerouting pipes to bring enough water to the Pattaya area that should prevent previously anticipated water shortages this summer.

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    Alongkorn Ponlaboot, advisor to the Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives, and Taveesak Thanadechopol, deputy director-general of the Irrigation Department, met with farmers and industry leaders at Irrigation Office 9 in Sriracha Jan. 17 to discuss the impending drought and efforts to minimize its effect.

    Taveesak outlined the current crisis in the East, saying seven reservoirs that normally feed water to Pattaya, Chonburi and Rayong are at just 42 percent of their 671-million-cubic-meter capacity. The 55 Central reservoirs are at 57 percent capacity while rivers are running at 30-50 percent water levels.

    Still, water levels are not uniform and some areas have more water in lakes than others. Thus the Irrigation Department, the Provincial Waterworks Authority and private companies like East Water Co. have taken steps to divert water from low- to high-demand regions.

    East Water has turned on connections from the Prasae and Klong Yai reservoirs to the Nong Plalai Reservoir. The utility told farmers that the diversion would not impact them as there is plenty of water to last until rainy season.

    The PWA, meanwhile, has begun to divert water from the Klong Luang Reservoir, bringing Chonburi 10 million cu. meters more water. Additionally the PWA has purchased water from private landowners to add 20 million cu. meters.

    The Irrigation Department has tapped reserves in Chanthaburi to bring water from Klong Wang Tanod to the Prasae Reservoir and installed nine pumps to keep it flowing the 45-kilometer distance. It’s expected by the end of rainy season, Prasae will get an additional 70 million cu. meters of water.

    All the extra water likely means there will be no water shortages in Pattaya, where the PWA had begun cutting flow rates and warning people of the worst shortages since 2015.

    Nonetheless, government agencies are urging people to conserve and have won agreements from Rayong and Chonburi’s large industrial estates to cut water usage by 10 percent. (CPRD)

    19 January 2020
    Pattaya News
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284772
  • Kind Pattaya motorbike taxi driver chases down tourist’s forgotten bag
    A Pattaya motorbike taxi driver chased a public minivan around town to track down a computer bag left behind by a Japanese tourist. Loading… Trirong Paijatturat, 39, presented the bag containing a notebook computer and important documents to Endo Hidenori Jan. 16 at Pattaya Police Station. The taxi driver said he saw Hidenori walking around […]
    Trirong Paijatturat chased down a public minivan and was able to return a bag containing a notebook computer and important documents to Endo Hidenori.

    A Pattaya motorbike taxi driver chased a public minivan around town to track down a computer bag left behind by a Japanese tourist.

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    Trirong Paijatturat, 39, presented the bag containing a notebook computer and important documents to Endo Hidenori Jan. 16 at Pattaya Police Station.

    The taxi driver said he saw Hidenori walking around in a panic at the Pattaya City School 5 bus stop on Sukhumvit Road and inquired what the problem was. They couldn’t communicate, so Trirong used a smartphone translation app to talk to each other.

    It seems the tourist forgot his computer bag in the minivan that brought him from Bangkok. Trirong got the Japanese man’s telephone number and sped off after the van without being asked or paid.

    He tracked it down near Central Road, retrieved the bag and took it to Soi 9 where police contacted the tourist to retrieve it.

    Hidenori said was not only grateful, but extremely impressed by the kindness shown by Trirong.

    19 January 2020
    Featured
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284775
  • Pattaya educators honored on Teacher’s Day
    Pattaya honored its educators at the annual Teacher’s Day celebration. Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome opened the Jan. 16 event at the Eastern National Indoors Sports Stadium attended by teachers, school administrators and school employees. Loading… The ceremony began with the offering of alms to 50 monks before Sonthaya lit candles and incense and led prayers to […]
    Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome presents certificates to deserving educators during this year’s Teacher’s Day celebrations at the Eastern National Indoors Sports Stadium.

    Pattaya honored its educators at the annual Teacher’s Day celebration.
    Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome opened the Jan. 16 event at the Eastern National Indoors Sports Stadium attended by teachers, school administrators and school employees.

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    The ceremony began with the offering of alms to 50 monks before Sonthaya lit candles and incense and led prayers to the Triple Gems. He then delivered the annual Teacher’s Day message from Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, who said this year’s holiday carried the slogan “Thai teachers love pupils, thinking of development”.

    Sonthaya, his deputies and top Education Department officials then presented certificates to outstanding teachers, administrators and even janitors at the city’s 11 public schools.

    19 January 2020
    Pattaya News
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284784
  • Sawang Fah road cleaned
    Pattaya street workers gave Sawang Fah Road a good scrubbing following a pileup of oil, grease and sand. Loading… Crews and water trucks were out on the busy Naklua street where it intersects with Sukhumvit Road Jan. 15 following complaints, particularly from motorcyclists, about the oily surface. Old grease was scraped, spilled oil mopped and […]
    Pattaya City’s Sanitary Engineering Office workers scrape old grease, mop spilled oil, and sweep sand to make Sawang Fah Road safer.

    Pattaya street workers gave Sawang Fah Road a good scrubbing following a pileup of oil, grease and sand.

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    Crews and water trucks were out on the busy Naklua street where it intersects with Sukhumvit Road Jan. 15 following complaints, particularly from motorcyclists, about the oily surface.

    Old grease was scraped, spilled oil mopped and sand swept to make the roadway safer.

    19 January 2020
    Pattaya News
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284779
  • Pattaya football stadium stalled at 40% complete
    Pattaya’s football stadium has been under construction for more than a decade. Whether it will be completed for a 2026 Olympic event remains an open question. Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome and his deputies paid their annual visit to the 254-rai Soi Chaiyapruek 2 Eastern National Sports Center Jan. 16 and found that little has changed since […]
    Contractor Rama 2-HT Joint Venture Co. claims work on Pattaya’s football stadium is now 40 percent complete – ten years after it was first started.

    Pattaya’s football stadium has been under construction for more than a decade. Whether it will be completed for a 2026 Olympic event remains an open question.

    Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome and his deputies paid their annual visit to the 254-rai Soi Chaiyapruek 2 Eastern National Sports Center Jan. 16 and found that little has changed since their Jan. 25, 2019 visit.

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    Contractor Rama 2-HT Joint Venture Co. claims the job is now 40 percent complete, but currently is stalled due to unforeseen problems drilling a foundation for the south amphitheater.

    Begun in 2009, the 774-million-baht sports complex was intended to house 12 different sport fields, swimming pool, tennis court, 12 main and minor sport stadiums and a 500-car parking lot.

    The first phase of the project, with 90 million baht spent on 5,000 of the planned 20,000 seats at the football stadium, was completed in September 2010. Grass was planted and construction of the final 15,000 seats was supposed to begin with a 500-million-baht budget later that year, with completion set for late 2012.

    Nothing was done for five years.

    In 2018, Chonburi Province obtained 398 million baht in funding for 2018-2020 and hired Rama 2-HT Joint Venture Co to finish the job. Work restarted a year ago on the west grandstand roof and east and south grandstands.

    But the ground under the south amphitheater was too rocky to drill and, due to air pollution concerns, workers could not use explosives that would send microscopic dust into the air, so currently nothing is being done.

    Officials hope the stadium will be done in time to host the Youth Olympic Games in 2026.

    18 January 2020
    Featured
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284710
  • Officials warn against fireworks carelessness during Chinese New Year celebrations
    Pattaya officials warned of fire and injury risks by careless Chinese New Year’s revelers. The warning comes after a British tourist was killed when illegal fireworks blew up in his face on New Year’s Eve. Loading… City hall reminded celebrants not to light firecrackers inside or close to flammable material. The warning also urged people […]
    Pattaya officials warned of fire and injury risks by careless Chinese New Year’s revelers.

    Pattaya officials warned of fire and injury risks by careless Chinese New Year’s revelers.

    The warning comes after a British tourist was killed when illegal fireworks blew up in his face on New Year’s Eve.

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    City hall reminded celebrants not to light firecrackers inside or close to flammable material. The warning also urged people to stand 10 meters away from firecrackers and not to light too many at once. Children also should not play with fireworks, the common-sense reminder said.

    Fire risks also increase during Chinese New Year’s, as many people light incense or burn joss paper.

    Officials urged people only to burn joss paper outdoors and away from dry grass, trash and other flammable items and to keep a bucket of water handy.

    Indoors, people were reminded not to leave candles and incense burning when not in the room or at home, to check electric red lanterns and other lights for frayed wires and to turn off gas valves and stoves when not being used.

    17 January 2020
    Featured
    https://www.pattayamail.com/?p=284715