Phuket’s Biggest Stories From the Past Week: Plane breaks down, bus shooting and more

Hello, Phuket Express Readers and Supporters!

The following is our weekly feature in which we highlight the top local stories in our area of 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 the Phuket province.

They are in no particular order of importance but roughly in order of publishing. These are from Monday, February 6th, 2023, to Sunday, February 12th, 2023.

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

  1. Smoke and fire came out from the right side of a plane while it was taking off at Phuket International Airport over the past weekend.The AZURAIR Airlines was taking off on a flight to Moscow in Russia. The Air Traffic Controller saw some smoke coming out from the right side of the plane. 
  2. A Chinese tourist has allegedly been injured after being slashed by a tour operator in Kata.

A tour staffer has been charged with bodily harm causing injury and carrying a knife in public.

A tour company is facing six months of a license suspension and could be facing fines of up to 500,000 baht after a staffer attacked a Chinese tourist.

A Chinese Vice Consul is in Phuket to meet with the Phuket Governor after a Chinese tourist was attacked with a knife by a tour staffer in Phuket, following a dispute over a refund.

3. The first Chinese tour group in three years arrived at the Phuket International Airport.

There are in total 180 passengers from a direct flight from Spring Airlines from Shanghai that arrived at the airport.

4. Twenty French motorbike racers have been arrested after causing a public nuisance.

Forty-four foreign drivers have been arrested in Patong for not having driving licenses.

Legal actions are being taken against motorbike rental operators in Patong for allowing drivers with no driving licenses to rent motorbikes.

The Head of the Consulate of the French Office in Phuket met with the Patong Police after 20 French motorbike racers were arrested.

5. Two people on a bus in Phuket have sustained injuries after a gunman opened fire while other passengers ran away.

A gunman who opened fire on a traveling bus in Phuket that injured two people has been found dead in the bus interior.

A gunman who opened fire on a traveling bus in Phuket and injured two people has been found dead on the bus and was a former soldier who suffered from mental problems.

Phuket transport operators are tightening security measures to prevent a recurrence.

That’s 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.