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COVID won’t stop Songkran this year

BANGKOK: Songkran celebrations will go ahead next month after a two-year hiatus due to COVID, the government has said while adding that health and safety measures will still need to be followed.

CoronavirusCOVID-19culturehealthSafety
By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 9 March 2022, 09:21AM


Bangkok’s Khao San Road is quiet on the Songkran Day in April last year. Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut

Bangkok’s Khao San Road is quiet on the Songkran Day in April last year. Photo: Nutthawat Wicheanbut

Government spokesman Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana yesterday (Mar 8) said Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has given assurances that all related activities and inter-provincial travel will be permitted during the Songkran festival from April 13-15.

But during celebrations, the public must comply strictly with “Vuca” - Vaccine, Universal Prevention, COVID free-setting and ATK testing - measures, Mr Thanakorn said.

The Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) will meet on Mar 18 to discuss public health safety measures for the Songkran holidays, the Bangkok Post reported.

Prayut has strongly suggested everyone planning to enjoy the water-throwing festival at least get a third vaccine dose and undergo an ATK test both before and after their travels.

Thai Residential

Mr Thanakorn said Prayut also urged vulnerable groups - those aged 60 and above, people with underlying illnesses and pregnant women - to be fully vaccinated ahead of the festival.

The spokesman said Prayut was concerned that certain events could heighten the risk of COVID-19 transmission, especially family gatherings, water pouring rites and live entertainment.

People must remain vigilant and practice preventive measures, such as social distancing, wear face masks and regularly wash their hands, Mr Thanakorn said.

Dr Opas Karnkawinpong, director-general of the Department of Disease Control, said COVID-19 infections may have reached their peak as the infection rate, detected by RT-PCR and ATK tests, has declined in the past 2-3 days. So far, the infection rate in many countries including Thailand has not reached 60-70% of their population, Dr Opas added.

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Kurt | 10 March 2022 - 01:19:02

@Foot, when you received 2 vaccinations through "PhuketMustWin", consider yourself as being fully vaccinated. That is what "PhuketMustWin"policy is. Did you by now took a blood test and know how many % antibodies you still have? If not, why not? Blindly taking vaccines is not a good idea. Many Thai got blindly 4 jabs in less than 12 months. Madness.

Foot | 09 March 2022 - 16:17:10

How can one be fully vaccinated when the "Phuketmustwin" registration site doesn't work.

Fascinated | 09 March 2022 - 09:42:13

One could also reverse the headline to 'Songkran won't stop COVID'.

JohnC | 09 March 2022 - 09:25:47

Oh goody! Back to hiding from stupid idiots throwing water in your face as you ride past on your motorbike. That was one of the nice things about covid restrictions, it stopped this type of behaviour.

 

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