Chiang Rai: Search area becomes crowded with media and onlookers
The ongoing search in Chiang Rai, where 13 members of a football team are trapped inside by rising floodwaters, is starting to suffer from too much media and local interest.
The search of Luang Cave in Tham Luang-Khun Nam Nang Non Forest Park is being led by Navy SEAL personnel, who have been joined by teams of experts from universities and ministries.
The latest to arrive on the scene last night were Interior Minister Anupong Paojinda and Tourism Minister Veerasak Kohsurat, accompanied by a pack of Bangkok reporters.
Television broadcasts have revealed the site has become increasingly crowded and busy. Reporters are complaining of having to make long treks in search of a cellphone signal to send their stories back to base (It would have been much more convenient if the young football players had got lost in an area with better 5G coverage – The Thaiger).
Chiang Rai authorities have closed roads leading to the cave and told people to stay away from the area so rescue attempts won’t be hampered.
Facebook page Kao Sarn Sataranapai (Disaster News) has raised the alarm over potential crowding at the search site. It said jammed communication lines could pose additional difficulties for the rescue teams. Meanwhile the large number of people at the site would generate sanitation challenges and a potential health risk for rescue workers and volunteers.
Another danger flagged was volunteers and onlookers, without full access to information, distributing inaccurate updates on the search that could confuse both relatives of the missing and the public.
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