Before the mass deployment, Region 8 Police Lt Gen Jirawat Thippayachan addressed the troops at an assembly at Phuket City Police Station at 9pm.
The assembly comprised officers from the Phuket Provincial Police, Tourist Police, Phuket Immigration, Marine Police, Highway, military personnel and 150 volunteer administrative officers from the public sector.
Phuket Provincial Police have assigned all 1,337 of their officers, setting up checkpoints to cover all areas and “rapid response” units have been stationed at each police station on the island to treat infected patients or assist in patient surveillance, Lt Gen Jirawat pointed out.
The assembly was held to “prepare personnel to be operational in the effective enforcement of the law to prevent potential complications”. Similar assemblies were held across the country, he said
“We have an important goal of limiting travel and the movement of people and preventing people from gathering in large groups, especially in Phuket, which is a high risk area,” Lt Gen Jirawat said.
“The Phuket Governor has issued various strict measures to in accordance with the current situation, which must be taken seriously.
“We may not feel as comfortable as usual, but we must all adapt to survive. We have a responsibility to the public so we can overcome this crisis,” he added.
Lt Gen Jirawat concluded his address to the officers and volunteers assembled with words of support: “May you all work together and take your responsibilities seriously, and protect everyone in the manner that the government has laid out in its guidelines.
“We must publicise these guidelines. Let the people know, so they will act accordingly to prevent the spread of disease, and not violate the terms of any announcements or orders.
“And I would like to encourage fellow police officers and all relevant personnel in carrying out their duties vigorously.”