The Department of Marine and Coastal announced on Monday that smoking will be banned at all beaches in the kingdom.
The ban was made after a large number of cigarette butts were collected on Patong Beach.The ban will first be imposed on 20 popular beaches such as Hua Hin, Pattaya and Patong starting in November. The law is eventually expected to be enforced on all beaches nationwide.
The enforcement which is under the power of Article 17 of the 2015 Act on the Promotion of Marine and Coastal Resources Management will be presented on Oct. 22-23 during a summit of ASEAN countries about marine debris to be held in Phuket province.
“We are not completely banning smoking on the beach, but we will arrange a smoking area with bins where cigarette butts can be disposed,” said the department’s Director-General Jatuporn Buruspat. “But we will not allow smoking while strolling on the beach because eventually, there is a high chance they will be thrown on the beach.”
He added that those who violate the law will face a maximum of one year in jail or a fine up to 100,000 baht, or both. He would also ask the Marine Department for their cooperation to ban smoking on boats.