Covid-19 measures in Phuket 


Depending on the severity of the Covid-19 situation in each province, the government has imposed different safety measures. Classified as a “Maximum Controlled Area” or “red” zone, those living in Phuket are not permitted to hold gatherings of more than 50 people. 

On 9th May 2021, two residents in Phuket were arrested for violating safety regulations. However, the internet remains divided as to whether or not the accused actually deserved legal punishment. 

Here’s a summary of what went down.  

Recent Covid-19 news:


Foreigners arrested for holding house party 


Two foreigners were taken into police custody on 9th May 2021. 

Around 5PM, police officers showed up at their villa in Nong Hai and arrested two individuals, Mrs. Bolton Lama and Mr. Carl Martin Oestlind, reported Phuket Times

They were said to violate the Communicable Disease Act 2558 and Article five of Phuket Order No. 2284/2564, the latter which does not condone social gatherings unless pressing, like funerals or ordination ceremonies. 

Covid-19 measures in Phuket Image credit: Phuket Times


Was their party illegal? 


On the Phuket Times Facebook page, one person posted a video of the arrest.  

Covid-19 measures in Phuket
Screenshot: Phuket Times

In the video, you can hear the police asking if they’re holding a party with family members. The homeowner then responds “No, these are my close friends”, and later adds that none of them “have been to Bangkok”. 

Later, the police officer zooms in on a cooler containing alcoholic beverages and asks all everyone whether or not they live here or not. 

Another woman then explains that they were “just having a barbeque.” 


Netizens debate about arrest’s fairness  


While the Thai government has implemented safety measures for “dark red”, “red”, and “orange” zones, they have also given power to local authorities to set appropriate safety measures. So, it’s unclear whether or not which laws these Phuket residents violated. 

Covid-19 measures in Phuket

Screenshot: Phuket Times

 

Covid-19 measures in Phuket

The netizen also posted a photo of the announcement asking residents to pause holding events unless absolutely necessary.
Screenshot: Phuket Times

Translation: No matter how you see it, it’s too much. It’s been publicly announced, but were they aware of the rules? Did they make an announcement for foreigners in Phuket? Even some Thais don’t know about it. Tourism-based cities rely on tourists.

 

Covid-19 measures in Phuket

Screenshot: Phuket Times

Translation: After watching the video, I can only see seven people sitting quietly (as shown in the video). The authorities went and focused on the alcoholic beverages, but maybe they always had alcohol there anyway. However, if they’re wrong and went against the announcement, then okay, they’re wrong. 

 

Covid-19 measures in Phuket
Screenshot: Phuket Times


Make sound decisions during the pandemic


With daily announcements on new measures, it can be overwhelming and difficult to keep up with all the regulations. Regardless, it’s crucial that you keep yourself safe. So, make sure you frequently wash your hands, wear a mask when out in public, and take whatever precautions you know will keep you safe. 


Cover images adapted from: Phuket Times

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