Snake bites Phuket tourist on the nose!

Snake bites Phuket tourist on the nose!

Link to original story from The Nation 11th January 2016

Snake show Phuket

Snake show Phuket

Snake bites Phuket tourist – A KISS from a snake turned into a horror for a Chinese tourist in Phuket over the weekend, prompting official action on venues that attract tourists with animal exhibitions.

A viral video clip on YouTube captured the 29-year-old female tourist bending down to touch the python with her nose. The reptile, apparently spooked, suddenly bit her nose causing her to scream in pain and shock.

The woman received eight stitches at Phuket International Hospital and has already returned to her home country.

The incident prompted police and Phuket Tourism and Sports official Santi Pawai to investigate Phuket Biotechnology’s office in Tambon Chalong Muang Phuket, which draws tourists with a snake show and products derived from snakes.

Kritiporn Phumkunchorn, general manager of the company, said the bite was an accident. The tourist had tried to kiss the three-year-old, 1.5metre-long snake, which was often featured in tourists’ souvenir photos.

The company took the woman to hospital, covered her medical bills and came to a settlement with her over compensation, Kritiporn said.

The company – which has operated for two years without any similar problems reported – will temporarily suspend operations and train staff in safety measures, she added.

Operators of animal- show venues in Phuket will also be summoned to outline long-term safety measures at a meeting on Thursday, Santi said.

Initially, business operators will be asked to ensure tourists do not get too close to the animals, he added.

The Conservation Area Management Office 5 ( Nakhon Si Thammarat) affirmed that the company had a licence to keep the animal, but the office will launch a full investigation today, said Thongchai Thongboonyang, a wildlife protection official with the office.

He said Phuket had only five or six venues featuring snake shows for tourists, and that his office only issued licences to possess the animals on the condition that companies would not put them on show unless they received local authorities’ permission. PRIME MINISTER Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed eight ministries to purchase rubber as struggling southern rubber farmers ramped up their efforts to get the government to help them by calling for a huge demonstration on Tuesday.

Farmers want the price of rubber to be raised to at least Bt60 per kilogram.

The ministries of Transport, Interior, Education, Commerce, Public Health, Defence, Industry and Agriculture were ordered to buy rubber, according to Government Spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd.

The ministries will submit their purchasing plans to the Office of the Prime Minister’s secretary by noon today, he said, adding the ministries have to buy the rubber with their own budget.

The government is under pressure to find solutions for the rubber farmers’ plight after the price of rubber plummeted.

A southern rubber planters’ network in 16 southern provinces yesterday announced its fivepoint demand for the government to solve the problem. The network’s demands include calling on the government to stop the sale of 360,000 tonnes of rubber in stockpiles and apply Article 44 of the interim charter to ensure the domestic use of rubber.

The group – which has also called for the rubber latex price to be increased to Bt60 per kilogram from the current market price of Bt29 – affirmed it was not motivated by politics, as Prime Minister General Prayut had said. It said rubber farmers had been sacrificed by the government long enough and they would “fight for survival” together with Thaworn Senneam, a former coleader of the now-defunct People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC).

The network also wants the former head of the PDRC, Suthep Thaugsuban, to support farmers demonstrating in his home province Surat Thani because they had protested alongside the PDRC and now it was their turn to get help.

The network met yesterday at the Thasae Land Settlement Cooperative at Tambon Tha Koei in Surat Thani’s Tha Chang district to prepare for Tuesday’s protest.

One of the network’s leading members, Kittisak Viroj, the chairman of the Rubber and Oil Palm Farmers Association in Surat Thani, said the government’s bid to get farmers to grow bananas instead of rubber would cause the

Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha instructed that 20,000 tonnes of para-rubber be used to build roads via the Transport Ministry. He also ordered provincial and sub-district administration organisations use para-rubber in the construction of sport fields.

The government approved Bt15 billion to be spent on projects in which loans will be given to promote side jobs for rubber farmers.

The Cabinet last November approved a Bt12-billion budget to compensate rubber farmers for their production costs.

The Rubber City project will be implemented to boost para-rubber processing. banana price to fall. Small-scale rubber farmers in Trang province – who last week threatened to go on hunger strike yesterday if the government continues to ignore their plight – did not carry out the threat.

The group, led by Saksarit Sriprasart, had said it would carry out the hunger strike in conjunction with other rubber farmer movements in other provinces.

During the opening ceremony of a para-rubber processing factory in Satun’s Khuan Ka Long district yesterday, former prime minister Chuan Leekpai gave morale support to southern rubber farmers but said the government was trying to find solutions to their plight.

He said the factory, a collaboration involving 16 rubber cooperatives in Satun, was another successful step in attempting to add value to para-rubber products.

He said the drop in the rubber price stemmed from outside factors that were hard to tackle, and he urged farmers to adjust and grow other plants – such as bitter beans and mangosteen – to supplement their income.

Pheu Thai Party acting deputy spokesman Anusorn Iamsa-ard urged the government to solve the farmers’ plight, which he said could soon result in five kilograms of rubber costing Bt100 and more farmers becoming destitute if nothing were done to help them.

A former Democrat MP for Trang, Somboon Uthaiwiankul, has submitted an open letter to the government in which he said that if former MPs could figure out solutions to the problem they should speak out.

Somboon also wrote that the government should be sincere in solving the problem – not just use its power to threaten rubber farmers, who were in a dire state.

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