I am a foreigner living in Phuket. I have seen several police boxes at different intersections across the island, but I have rarely seen an officer on duty at them. I am just wondering if any officers are assigned to work at any of these “watch boxes” and what is the responsibility of Traffic Police stationed at these intersections?
– Mr Anton, from Wichit
Officers on duty at police boxes are responsible for controlling traffic signals at the intersection where they are located and generally making it more convenient for traffic to pass through the junction and ensure it is safe for pedestrians to cross the road at those locations.
This includes directing traffic when necessary. These officers are also to respond to any accidents in the area if necessary, take complaints from residents, and help stop any suspects being pursued by any authorities.
There are a lot of police boxes on the island. In Phuket Town alone, we have several, such as the one in front of Satree Phuket School, another in front of the District Office, and another one on Montri Rd. These police boxes also serve as rest stops for officers on patrol and can be used as the “base” for police checkpoints.
Normally only one to two officers are on duty at a police box at any one time. Each police box is under the responsibility of the nearest police station, and the number of officers stationed at each police box depends on how busy the intersection is and the staffing level at that the police station responsible.
At some locations, officers work in shifts – from 7am to midday, midday to 6pm, and from 6pm to 10pm. At other locations, officers are there only during rush hours.
People can report crimes or any other incidents to officers stationed at these police boxes. This can make it faster for police to respond to situations. The officer may respond himself or call for other patrol officers to respond.
– Pol Lt Col Teerawat Liamsuwan, Phuket City Traffic Police Chief and Deputy Superintendent of Phuket City Police Station