PARASAILING should be banned along the beach in Batu Ferringhi unless a professional body is set up to oversee such operations.
A spokesman of a leading hotel in Batu Ferringhi said it is vital for these operators to be equipped with the knowledge and expertise especially during landing and take-off.
He said a certified professional body would be able to provide the operators with all the necessary training, adding that from what he observed, the existing operators were not “good enough” and this had resulted in the mishaps.
“The risk of running the such an operation is very high, as parasailers can easily suffer from injuries to the backbone or knees.
“The activities should be banned, unless the operators are certified by a professional body. Operating parasailing activities is no joke as it deals with human lives.
“Professionals are needed in maneuvering the boats. They also need to give a clear explanation to the parasailers especially during take-off and landing.
“Amateurs cannot do this. Besides, some of the beachboys engaged by the operators are not well versed in English.
“This could result in misunderstanding and that’s when mishaps can happen,” he said when contacted yesterday.
The spokesman suggested that such activities be carried out in areas where there are fewer crowds.
He said now, such activities were all over the beach.
“Hotel guests who intend to have team-building activities along the beach can not do so as the operators have taken the space available, and this is not fair to us.”
Meanwhile, Malaysian Association of Hotels Penang chapter chairman Mary Ann Harris said operators who offered parasailing activities by the beach should be more vigilant.
“They must stress on safety measures.
“I will bring this matter up during a meeting with the Penang Municipal Council and all the relevant authorities tomorrow (today),” she said.
Harris said the matter has to be dealt with seriously to prevent such mishaps from recurring.
“We have to find a way to prevent such incidents, so that nobody else, especially the innocent by-standers, will be injured,” she said.
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