Police in Phuket have arrested 7 French tourists for violating the State of Emergency Decree by holding a party and also for illegal possession of hookahs. Phuket Provincial Police Commander Maj Gen Rungrote Thakurapunyasiri told Phuket News.
Among the evidence seized in the raid were four hookahs; two packages of the unused inhalant; and also 21 pieces used inhalant. It was not made clear whether the inhalant was tobacco-based or otherwise.
Furthermore, the seven have been charged with forming an illegal gathering in breach of the State of Emergency Decree. Above all to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Maj Gen Rungrote said.
They were also charged under the Customs Act for illegal possession of illegally imported un-taxed items.
Meanwhile, the Patong area has been ordered locked down to stem the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus.
Phuket Governor Pakkapong Tawipat said the lockdown is necessary as more than 80% of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Phuket were workers at visitors to entertainment venues in the Patong Municipality.
The order was effective from Sunday April 5th, 2020 until further notice. Under the order, people and vehicles are not allowed to enter or leave the Patong area. Except for vehicles transporting consumer goods, cooking gas, fuel, post parcels, printed materials and fuel.
Also excluded are ambulances and other vehicles used for State of Emergency medical operations.
Those who want to be excluded from the lockdown must seek permission from communicable disease control officials.
Phuket Governor Orders Lockdown of Patong
Phuket’s public health office is to take the temperatures of all people in Patong. Those suspected of being infected with the virus must be put in isolation or quarantine. Public places, roads, houses and shops in Patong must be cleaned and sprayed with disinfectant.
Any hotels in tambon Patong that need to keep their employees at work must provide them with living quarters until they have finished their jobs.
As for employees who want to return to their home provinces, the hotels must submit their names to the leader of the Tha Chat Chai checkpoint to seek permission for them to leave the province. This must be done by April 7.
According to the Bangkok Post residents have been asked not to leave their houses to prevent them from contracting the virus and possibly spreading it to other people.
Violators of this order are punishable under under Section 52 of the Communicable Diseases Act of 2015 and liable to up to one year in jail or a fine of up to 100,000 baht or both. They may also be liable to punishment under the executive decree of 2005 for administration in emergency situations.