Authorities Crack Down on River Restaurants

 | Tue 21 Oct 2014 18:22 ICT

CityNews – Chiang Mai authorities have cracked down on coffee shops and restaurants that have set up tables without permission in shallow stretches of rivers and streams.

A restaurant in Hang Dong. Photo: Channel 3.

Some have been set up in the Tha Chang river in Hang Dong district, and have proved popular with locals and tourists who can soak their feet in the river as they sip their drinks. Others have been set up in Mae Rim, Samoeng and Chiang Dao districts, and there are believed to be more than 10 such eateries around the province.

But local authorities have warned that the practice is against the law. Officials from local forestry departments and the Chiang Mai Marine Department recently inspected some of the restaurants in the Tha Chang river and ordered the owners to remove the tables and chairs.

Apisit Kampiro, director of the Chiang Mai Marine Department, said that if entrepreneurs submit documents asking for proper permission, the department will consider the matter. The tables must not block the waterways, and environmental and health and safety concerns must be taken into account, he said.

Concerns have been raised about rubbish and scraps of food being dropped in the rivers, which are an important source of water for some communities.