A School in northern Thailand’s Chiang Mai province has been closed for 14 days over fears of the covid-19 coronavirus. The school was closed after a parent was found not to have quarantined himself after returning from Japan.
The school director, Mr. Sawong Chaiya, said a teacher found out on Facebook that the parent had been to Japan during Feb 18-21. After returning, the parent took the child to the school in Chiang Mai as usual without self-isolating as urged by authorities. The school has about 2,300 students from kindergarten to secondary levels, the director said.
On Thursday night he ordered the Chiang Mai school closed for thorough coronavirus disinfection. Above all to prevent a possible spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
“Although the parent passed the screenings at Suvarnabhumi and Chiang Mai airports, he must follow the preventive measure of self-isolation for 14 days,” Mr Sawong said.
He also ordered 25 classmates and teachers of the child’s class stay home for 14 days. Visitors to the school were ordered to wear face masks and be screened for a fever.
The director also ordered the school closure to extend from next Monday to March 13 to cover the incubation period of Covid-19.
Activities at the school were postponed. Consequently they included a farewell party for grade 6 pupils, examinations and the admission of new students.
Coronavirus affecting Chiang Mai’s tourism industry
Meanwhile, Nearly all Chinese tourists groups have cancelled their trips to northern Thailand, heavily affecting Chiang Mai province. Northern Thailand, especially Chiang Mai has a high proportion of tourists from China.
Chiang Mai is one of the most popular destinations among Chinese tourists. Chiang Mai normally sees around 6,000 tourist arrivals in one day. The number of people flying into Chiang Mai International Airport from mainland China has dropped from 5,000 to 6,000 people per day to less than 800 people, a drop of over 80%.
Like other tourist spots across Thailand, the iconic Tha Phae Gate ruin in Chiang Mai city has seen fewer Chinese tourists. Especially after the covid-19 has killed thousands and infected ten of thousands worldwide.
Last week Thailand announced its 40th case of the covid-19 coronavirus after a couple returned from Japan infected. with the virus. The couple then infected their grandson who went to school and possibly infected more people.
The school was ordered closed and people who were in contact with the young boy were ordered into self quarantine.
Anubaan Chiang Mai School on lock down