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TUESDAY, September 27, 2022
Bangkok rescuers explain why bodies were left lying on streets

Bangkok rescuers explain why bodies were left lying on streets

FRIDAY, July 23, 2021

A rescue official provided an explanation on Thursday as to why three bodies were left lying on Bangkok streets on Tuesday and the difficulties they face.

“The deceased person’s family or the individual who finds the body will need to contact the police first for crime-scene investigation before the rescue team can collect the body for autopsy,” said Kraisorn Thongmuang, an ambulance driver with the Ruamkatanyu Foundation.

It must be understood that the foundation’s officers do not have the authority to touch a body before the arrival of police. If a mistake occurs, rescue officials may be prosecuted for camouflaging the corpse. The foundation has to team up with specific officers to complete this operation. Special training is required for this job.

Officers must perform their duties under the highest safety measures to avoid infection. Of the bodies we collect daily, 70 per cent or 20 corpses are those of Covid-19 patients. Each pick-up takes a long time because an investigation has to be launched, PPE suits need to be worn and the body has to be wrapped in three layers of sterilized plastic.

Despite these complicated procedures and inadequate staff, transportation and equipment, we can collect four to five bodies within two hours, he added.


“Only two rescue foundations have been given the authority to collect the bodies of Covid-19 patients in Bangkok and its perimeter. The foundations are Ruamkatanyu and Poh Teck Tung. We are not tired or discouraged, and are willing to perform our duty wholeheartedly as long as society understands that we are doing our best,” Kraisorn said.