Kamala Taxi Conflict: Local Driver Fined for Intimidation

Kamala, Phuket – Tensions between local taxi operators and mobile app-based transportation services came to a head this week, May 16th, 2024 in Kamala, resulting in a local taxi driver being fined 500 Baht for aggressive behavior.

The incident, which has sparked considerable attention online after a video went viral, involved Mr. Chalermphon, a 40-year-old mobile application taxi driver. According to reports The Phuket Express, Mr. Chalermphon was transporting an unidentified foreign customer on the evening of Wednesday, May 15th, when he was confronted by a group of local taxi drivers.

The confrontation occurred outside a popular nightclub in Kamala, where Mr. Chalermphon had arrived to pick up his client. It was then reported that about three local taxi drivers, stationed at a nearby taxi stand, pursued Mr. Chalermphon’s vehicle, ultimately coercing the foreign customer to disembark in the rain and cancel the ride via his mobile app.

In response to the incident, Mr. Chalermphon took the matter to the Kamala Police. The police acted promptly, calling in Mr. Massamee, a local taxi driver allegedly identified as the instigator. After an investigation, Mr. Massamee was charged with threatening behavior and was handed a fine of 500 Baht.

This event has highlighted the ongoing friction between traditional taxi services and the burgeoning app-based alternatives in the region. The local authorities have not yet commented on any measures that might be taken to prevent such incidents in the future.

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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.