New Pattaya Wreck Placement
On November 28, 2009 The Dusit D2 Bangkok Hotel, Pattaya in conjunction with the Tourism Authority of Thailand held a meeting to introduce the newly formed “Pattaya Dive Club”. In attendance was the major of Pattaya, Khun Itthipol Kunplome, Khun Jatuporn Buruspat, Director of the Dept. of Marine and Coastal Resources and his Adviser, Dr. Torn Thamrongnawasawat, and representing the Thai Royal Navy, Captain Chesta Jaipiem, Director of Civil Affair Division, Hans Ulrich, Director of PADI Southeast Asia, representatives of various Dive Operators in Pattaya and other related organizations, and various members of the media.
During this meeting Captain Chesta Jaipiem, of the Royal Navy, has stated that in the year of 2011, the navy will be prepared to donate another wreck in the Pattaya Dive Area in commemoration of His Majesty the King’s Birthday. And that the Navy is prepared to donate up to 5 Ship Wrecks to this area over the next 10 years should all parties concerned work together. In the desire to work together, the Royal Navy wants to have suggestions from the Private Sector about the placements of these wrecks. These placements will be subject to the approval of the Royal Navy; the Dept. of Marine and Coastal Resources; the Dept. of Fisheries; the Marine Transportation Dept. The Private Sector’s suggestions will be given fair consideration.
I would like to make our suggestion as to where the first wreck should be placed and explain why I think it is the best place.
Attached are 2 maps of our diving area. Just off of Koh Lan, Hat Nuan, a little Northwest is a point I have called South Point. There are fairly nice corals there down to about 18 meters and it is also shallow enough for the second dive for a DSD. In the high season it is protected from the generally from the north wind and waves. On an outgoing tide it is protected. During the slow season there are only occasionally high waves from the south but very seldom. Right now, if we decide to do Koh Rin, doing a wreck the same day is impractical. With a wreck at South Point we could do it on the way out or on the way back. Koh Man Wichai and Koh Klung Bedan are also in a good line to it. It is near so that it would be accessible without having to burn too much Diesel. With the HTMS Kut nearby, it would be easy to do a 2 wreck day. Also, if you look at the marine map, there is the option of putting it at 20, 30, 40 or even 50 meters right in the immediate area. I would like to see it at around 20 meters so that even Open Water qualified could do it and more advanced divers could have a lot longer bottom time. But if the Marine transportation Dept. would require it to be deeper it is easy to comply. Also, I have not noticed any fishing going on that close in to the island so I do not think the Dept. of Fisheries would object.
Some people have stated that they would like to see the first wreck out by Koh Rin, and while I would like one out there as well there are fewer protected areas out there and with the Navy doing their unannounced target practice up there, there would be many disappointed days as we would have to cancel the wreck dive. I suggest that we request another wreck off of Koh Rin at a later time when we have more wrecks in the water already.
For people who agree with this suggestion or disagree, please feel free to post a comment on this page. If there are alternate sites that you would feel are better, please post a comment on this page. If the Navy does come through with their verbal pledge of up to five additional wrecks for the Pattaya area then the more people who endorse any plan the better chance we have of placing them in good locations. If we can successfully get the Navy to donate one wreck, it should be easier for the second! Click thumbnail for maps of proposed new Pattaya wreck site.
Robert Camp, Adventure Divers
Related pages, Promoting Pattaya as a Dive Destination