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After weeks of reports of a cleanup operation in Phuket that has seen many buildings ripped down off the beaches, millions of baht of counterfeit goods being incinerated, vendors being moved off the beach and taxi mafia being arrested Koh Samui seems to be next in line for transformation.
Under Junta rule the local police have been instructed to enforce laws more stringently and recently road blocks have been popping up more frequently to catch those riding a motorbike with no helmet and cars driving with no tax. Illegal parking is now being addressed and the first wheel clamps have made their way onto the island. Chains are being used to immobilize illegally parked motorbikes and reports have come in that plans are afoot to address the lack of metered taxi’s situation as well as speed cameras and breathalyzers to curb speeding and drink driving.
It is likely that the Samui cleanup will be received with mixed reactions from the island residents, some of whom are ready to embrace change and believe that by enforcing the law, especially on the roads, the death toll from road accidents will be reduced, others would prefer the island not to change and believe that accidents are part and parcel of living in a place where, up to now, the loosely enforced rules have lead to a greater sense of freedom than can be found in other parts of the world.