Phuket’s biggest stories from last week: Missing German tourist dominates Phuket media but safely found today, and much more

Hello, Phuket Express Readers and Supporters!

The following is our weekly feature in which we highlight the top local stories in our area Phuket, from the past week. The number of stories differs from week to week.

These are chosen and curated by our editorial team and are designed for our readers to get a quick “catch-up” of important stories they may have missed. We publish many stories daily and it is easy to lose track of important events or changes in our area. We do national recaps in a separate article, this is only the top local stories in Phuket province.

They are in no particular order of importance but roughly in order of publishing. These are from Monday, May 9th, 2022, to Sunday, May 15th, 2022.

Let’s get started and see what the top local stories were!

1. A 76-year-old German tourist has gone missing from a hotel in the Thalang district and relevant tourist agencies are searching for her and asking the public for assistance. (FOUND this morning, alive, weak, but overall well)

Ms. Barbara, 76, She has gone missing from a hotel in the Mai Khao sub-district since May 9th, 2022.

76-year-old German tourist missing from hotel in Thalang, relevant agencies ask for help

UPDATE: Search continues for 76 year-old missing German tourist in Thalang, Phuket, believed to have Alzheimer’s disease

UPDATE: Missing 76-year-old German tourist last seen on CCTV walking on local road in Mai Khao, Thalang

UPDATE: Now six-day search for a missing 76-year-old German tourist with memory issues expanded in Phuket

She was found alive but weak in a shallow freshwater canal near the Sirinat National Park in the Thalang district this morning (May 16th)!

2. A 62-year-old grandmother called the press for help after her 12-year-old boy in the Thalang district has gone blind after he reportedly received a second dose of the Covid -19 vaccine, according to her. Meanwhile, leading Phuket doctors have confirmed the boy’s blindness was, according to them, NOT due to a Covid-19 vaccine.

The story rocked Thai social media, however, doctors from across Thailand have quickly responded, stating that while the incident was unfortunate it had nothing to do with Covid-19 vaccines and that, according to them, vaccines were safe and effective.

However the Phuket Governor personally took the boy to the Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok for treatment to attempt to restore his eyesight.


Phuket doctors state that a 12-year-old boy who went blind was NOT from a Covid-19 vaccine, following viral story

UPDATE: ฺฺBoy who went blind from bacterial infection in Phuket after viral story gets government aid and support

UPDATE: Phuket Governor personally takes blind boy involved in viral story to Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok

3. A woman has been pronounced dead after being attacked by her brother’s dogs at a house in the Thalang district on May 10th.

Ms. Sarinrat Laongpanitchakun, 38, was found bleeding heavily on a balcony in front of the house. About three severe wounds were found on her neck on the left side which were likely to be from fangs. The Phuket Express sends our condolences to her friends and family.

Woman dies after being attacked in Thalang, Phuket by her brother’s dogs

4. Phuket expects to generate more than a billion baht over the current four-day long holiday weekend, says the Phuket TAT office.

Ms. Nantasiri Ronsiri, the director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Phuket Office said that from May 13th to May 16th, a long holiday, the city generated about 1.8 billion baht.

Phuket expects to generate over a billion baht during four-day holiday weekend

5. Patong and tourism cities including Pattaya need ‘special zoning’ with nightlife venues open until 4 AM but nightlife business operators need to pay more tax, according to ‘Prab Keesin’, a prominent Patong businessman.

Nightlife operators in the special zones must pay more tax too as they will get more benefits, said Prab Keesin.

Patong and tourism cities including Pattaya need ‘special zoning’ with nightlife venues open till 4AM but need to pay more tax, suggests ‘Prab Keesin’, Patong businessman

That is all for this week, as always thanks for your support!


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Goongnang Suksawat
Goong Nang is a News Translator who has worked professionally for multiple news organizations in Thailand for many years and has worked with The Pattaya News for more than four years. Specializes primarily in local news for Phuket, Pattaya, and also some national news, with emphasis on translation between Thai to English and working as an intermediary between reporters and English-speaking writers. Originally from Nakhon Si Thammarat, but lives in Phuket and Krabi except when commuting between the three.