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Phuket bans alcohol sales at restaurants, issues order amid rise of Covid cases




Stock photo by Bence Boros for Unsplash

The ban on alcohol sales and consumption at restaurants has been reimposed in Phuket and will be in place until at least August 16. Certain “social activities,” like parties at public places, are also now prohibited for the next two weeks. The order, Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew yesterday, could be extended longer if the Covid-19 situation does not improve.

Phuket was also reclassified on the government’s colour-coded zoning scale based on provincial Covid-19 situations. The island province moved from a “yellow” zone under surveillance to an “orange” zone under control to combat the spread of the coronavirus. The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration’s zoning revision went into effect today. Before the revision, Phuket had been the only “yellow” zone.

As of yesterday, 382 people in Phuket were receiving hospital treatment for the coronavirus. Nationwide, there are a total of 209,039 active Covid-19 cases.

Last week, infections in Phuket exceeded its government-set threshold of 90 weekly Covid-19 cases. Officials earlier said that if cases exceeded the bar, then they would reconsider the “Phuket Sandbox” reopening scheme, which allows travellers from overseas, who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, to enter the island province without undergoing quarantine. The “Sandbox” is still on, but provincial authorities have imposed tight measures including the booze ban in restaurants and interprovincial travel restrictions in an effort to contain the virus.

Restrictions for Phuket, other “orange” zones

  • No public gatherings of more than 50 people.
  • Restaurants can offer dine-in services as usual.
  • Arcades and other amusement activities in shopping centres must close. Other stores can open as usual.
  • Educational venues can open but must abide by disease control measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

New provincial order in Phuket

The provincial order, which includes the ban on alcohol at restaurants, was announced at around 10pm last night on the Official Phuket Information Centre Facebook page. The order went into effect at midnight, just a couple of hours after the post was made public. Under the Emergency Decree, provincial governments have the power to impose disease control measures in addition to those set by the CCSA.

The order reiterated measures that are already in place in Phuket, like the closure of pubs, bars, nightclubs and other entertainment venues. It also outlined the restrictions set by the CCSA for “orange” zones and gave more detail on the restrictions.

Other disease control measures include…

  • Restaurants and cafes in Phuket can continue to offer dine-in services, but the sale and consumption of alcohol are not allowed. Traditional ceremonies such as weddings, funerals or religious activities are allowed but must have permission from relevant authorities and follow disease control measures.
  • Parties or gatherings in public areas such as beaches and parks is prohibited, especially when alcohol is involved. Residents are told to refrain from organising parties, celebrations or other festive events.
  • Public swimming pools must close, but private pools at hotels and resorts can remain open.
  • Convenience stores must be closed from 11pm to 4am.
  • Markets must limit the number of customers and enforce a social distancing of 4 metres per person.
  • Stadiums, sports venues, fitness centres, gyms, courts and parks must close by 9pm. Contact sports are not allowed. No spectators or gatherings are allowed at sports events.
  • Those filming movies, TV shows or other films must not have more than 50 people on set and no viewers are allowed. Actors and actresses can be exempt from wearing a mask during filming if first approved by the CCSA.

Island “sealed off” to domestic entry

Phuket officials have “sealed off” the island province to domestic travel, with the exception of emergency vehicles and those delivering medicine or other essential supplies. The borders are closed off for the next two weeks to domestic travel by land, air and sea. Travellers from overseas entering the province under the “Sandbox” reopening scheme and still enter.

Phuket bans alcohol sales at restaurants, issues order amid rise of Covid cases | News by Thaiger

Phuket bans alcohol sales at restaurants, issues order amid rise of Covid cases | News by Thaiger

SOURCE: Phuket News


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Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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