Pattaya, 10 March, 2010: a meeting was held at the Pattaya City Hall, attended by Mr. Weerawat Kharkhai (Pattaya Deputy Mayor), Police Colonel Nanthawut Suwanla-ong (Pattaya Police Superintendent), and Police Major Arun Phromphan (Tourist Police Inspector), as well as representatives from Sawangboriboon paramedics and Pattaya Relief. The meeting brief was to ensure adequate security measures were implemented to safeguard the upcoming Pattaya Music Festival, 2010.
The Pattaya Music Festival, 2010, to be held from 19-21 March, is being jointly sponsored by the Tourism Authority of Thailand and Pattaya City to the tune of Bt28 million. Pattaya Police will be responsible for road traffic flow, whilst security measures against dangerous weapons and explosives will be handled by the Navy. These pre-emptive measures, it is considered, will prevent any tarnishing of Pattaya’s good image, acquired over a number of years of successful festival organizing.
The Songkran Festival is yet another event likely to provoke concern, especially due to its extended length in Pattaya. The festival is often used as an excuse for the youth, in particular, to let off steam, invariably involving numerous instances of drunkenness, petty crime and worse than normal driving, with an accompanying higher accident rate. Accordingly a steering committee of police and kindred services met to decide on a raft of preventative measures. Those in attendance from the authorities included Police Colonel Somnuk Janket (Banglamung Police Superintendent), Police Lieutenant Colonel Supphachat Piammanat (Banglamung Police Crime Suppression Deputy Superintendent), Police Major Kamon Thaweesri (Banglamung Police Chief Inspector), and a team of police and volunteers, as well as officers from Banglamung Hospital and Sawangboriboon Foundation, representing the medical services.
Following the meeting, there was a practical rehearsal to test the co-ordination of the emergency-service teams, with a host of simulated accidents, and first-aid provision at the Naklua Sawang Fa traffic lights, during which the road was closed the 30 minutes.
Finally, because of a radical increase in crimes against tourists, including theft, snatch and grab and muggings, a team of police regulars and volunteers, led by Police Lieutenant Colonel Arun Phromphan from the Pattaya Tourist Police, walked the length of Walking Street, distributing 1155 emergency phone number cards to tourists, which were well received, inspiring confidence that every precaution was being taken to safeguard them.