Residents on Koh Lanta Noi in southern Thailand have finally lost patience after putting up with the shocking state of an important road for the last 20 years.
The three-kilometre dirt road from Boklong–Tuek Boran in Moo 4, Koh Lanta Noi Sub-District, is the main access to a local village, as well as the pier and a local tourist attraction.
About 40 families use the road regularly and they say they have had enough of tolerating what is basically a dirt track.
During the rainy season, they say, the road is covered in mud, puddles and potholes while during summer, the whole route is filled with dust and, in places, is almost impassable.
The road is also a travel route for holidaymakers as it leads to a pier and an ancient building, which is a tourist attraction.
“The road has been open for at least 30 years and 40 families living by it,” said 45-year-old Sunan Yangyuen, a local resident.
“People use this road every day, including children. It’s a risk for respiratory health problems. We have filed a complaint with the local authorities, including the OrBorTor [Sub-District Administration Organisation] but they keep denying responsibility. Decades have passed and the road remains the same.
“Summer has started and there is a lot of dust now. I would like the organisation or department involved to be responsible for this public road by making it a proper paved road.”
The President of Koh Lanta Noi OrBorTor, Sukij Yongkij, said that although the road was the OrBorTor’s responsibility, the organisation didn’t have enough money to pave it.
“The road hasn’t been given to the Rural Road Office so it is still under the OrBorTor responsibility,” he said. “However, we do not have enough in our budget to pave it. I have filed for a budget to seal a one-kilometre stretch and it is waiting for approval. I believe the project can start within a year.”