Here is a look at the top NATIONAL stories, chosen by our Pattaya News/TPN National team, from last week, April 12th to the 18th, with some commentary. They are not in any particular level of importance but are listed in the order of date of publication.
1. Shopping malls across the country to close earlier, at 9:00 P.M., to help stop Covid-19 spread
The Thai Retailers Association announced the closure of all department stores under its association at 9:00 P.M. since last Wednesday, reasoning to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 Coronavirus. The screening of customers visiting shopping malls is also strengthened, according to the president of the association. A day later, an order of the closure of national banks in department stores at 5:00 PM was also issued, claiming with similar reasons.
2. Spraying disinfectant at national borders is effective and beneficial, says Royal Thai Army, following criticism on social media
The official declaration had been made following criticism on Thai social media, claiming that spraying disinfectant on the Thailand-Myanmar borders is useless and not worth the cost. However, the Royal Thai Army, through the deputy spokeswoman, denied the public claims, reasoning that the procedure has complied with Public Health measures to prevent the domestic spread of the Covid-19 virus and any diseases that may possibly be contagious from the Myanmar refugees who had temporarily escaped to the border due to an internal political conflict. The disinfectant had also reportedly built confidence among local people before they could proceed with their daily activities in the areas.
3. Thai government declares new control zones and increases Covid-19 control measures nationwide, effective Sunday
The statement was officially declared after a big CCSA meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister, and has been in effect since last Sunday. 18 provinces with the highest numbers of infections had been categorized in “red zones” in which all restaurants for dining-in must be closed at 9:00 PM and at 11:00 PM. for takeaway, and all convenience stores are allowed to open between 4:00 AM. to 11:00 PM. Meanwhile, all entertainment venues, including bars, pubs, and massage parlors, in all provinces nationwide, must be closed, as well as all buildings at all educational institutions. Alcohol sales are also prohibited in all serving places/restaurants. The implementation will be effective for at least two weeks, until the end of April, to potentially prevent the spread of the Covid-19 Coronavirus.
4. Thailand’s Ministry of Interior gives total accident roundup for Songkran road safety campaign
A total of 277 deaths, 2,357 injuries, and 2,365 accidents were recorded during “seven dangerous days” of the Songkran holiday period. Nakhon Sri Thammarat was ranked with the highest number of fatalities and injuries at 106 and 109, respectively. Significantly, the number has been dropped from prior Songkran festivals due to, according to critics, the Covid-19 control measures of prohibiting water-splashing activities, fewer people traveling, entertainment venues being closed, and other related factors.
And that is all for this week. Thank you as always for reading the Pattaya News/TPN News!