Clampdown in Chiang Mai after socially active woman puts people at risk


Chiang Mai’s 50th Covid-19 case is a 25-year-old woman who visited many entertainment venues, pubs and restaurants. She tested positive on Monday.

Also read: Chiang Mai 50th Covid patient's travel history, announces curbs on visitors from 'red' provinces

In response to this, provincial authorities took proactive steps on Tuesday to see who else she may have infected, and found one 28-year-old male employee at Warm Up Café who tested positive.

Chiang Mai governor Dr Charoenrit Sanguansat said the strictest of measures have been put in place to ensure people’s safety.

Chatuchai Maneerat, Chiang Mai health office chief, said these infections were domestically transmitted and the only way of dealing with this outbreak was by limiting people’s movement.

Dr Kittiphan Chalom, assistant health office chief, said so far 486 people who may have been exposed have been tested. Of those at risk, 152 had come in close contact with the woman, including family members, people at the five entertainment venues and guests at a wedding party.

So far, the only person who has tested positive is the 28-year-old man who does the 3pm to 1am shift at the Warm Up Café. His timeline shows that he stopped by at a shop but not for long. He was at his job on December 31, when the 25-year-old woman had visited the café, which is not well ventilated.

Of the 152 people who came in close contact with the infected woman, 38 have tested negative, one positive, 101 are awaiting results, while the authorities are trying to contact 12 people.

The woman’s six family members are awaiting results, while the remainder can be divided as follows:

• Two in DC Chiang Mai Bar, both negative.

• 44 at Tha Khang shop, 22 have tested negative, 11 are awaiting results and 11 are waiting to be tested.

• 52 at Infinity Club, 50 of whom have tested negative and two are awaiting results.

• Four at Pretty Exclusive Club, two of whom are negative and two awaiting results.

• 31 at Warm Up Café, one positive, 25 negative and five awaiting results.

• 13 contacts elsewhere, namely:

• Six at a wedding ceremony, who are awaiting results;

• Six at a wedding reception, five of whom are awaiting results and one has yet to be tested;

• One at a nail salon, awaiting results.

Of the 334 low-risk contacts, 278 have tested negative and 56 are awaiting results.

Kanok Sriwichainan, a top Chiang Mai administration official, said in a bid to boost health protection, service establishments, pubs and bars will from Wednesday be closed for 14 days.

Authorities will action to be taken in relation to other establishments like department stores and restaurants, because these are areas where many people gather. He also said that the decision on closing schools was up to the principals.