Police meet with Pattaya "sea-walker" companies in wake of molestation case and false insurance claims
Police in Pattaya have called in representatives from all 17 sea-walker companies in a belated move to regulate the industry.
The companies that provide surface air to tourists who walk on the sea floor have been largely unregulated for years.
Several deaths have occurred in the past but recently a group of Cambodian men have been questioned over claims they fondled a 13 year old Thai/US girl under water off Koh Larn.
Yesterday tourist and regular police met with the operators at Pattaya police station to try to bring some standardization to the growing industry.
Safety was discussed along with the standardization of equipment and procedures that the operators should follow to ensure tourists were safe.
This included giving proper briefings and ensuring that tourists were dress appropriately for the activity.
Staff background checks are also being introduced.
A further problem has been Chinese tourists who have never been on the adventures making false insurance claims to the companies.
The operators said they had paid out in many cases when they had never even seen the tourists.
Ways to register tourists to stop the scam were discussed.
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