SUNDAY, April 21, 2024
nationthailand

Fear of copycat shooting sparks tighter security measures at Bangkok schools

Fear of copycat shooting sparks tighter security measures at Bangkok schools

Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt on Saturday ordered round-the-clock security at city schools following Thursday’s massacre at a nursery in Nong Bua Lamphu province.

“Don’t think that such an incident won’t happen [in Bangkok]. There could be copycat behaviour. The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration must take more measures to prevent outsiders from entering schools and there must be a warning system,” Chadchart said.

He ordered Bangkok public schools to screen all people entering or leaving their premises. Police and city law enforcement officers have also been deployed to direct traffic and provide security in school areas.

Fears of a copycat attack rose on Friday when a man high on drugs and carrying guns was arrested by police outside a Nakhon Si Thammarat school as he tried to take a child away.

Chadchart said the BMA will also increase measures to curb narcotic abuse in the city, starting with helping communities to take care of drug addicts.

“Bangkok aims to become free of ya ba,” he said, referring to rampant methamphetamine abuse. “That may be difficult and there are things beyond our control, but communities must be strengthened to improve.”

Chadchart said the BMA had not previously focused on tackling the drug problem but the massacre in Nong Bua Lamphu was a turning point.

Former policeman Panya Khamrab, thought to have been a methamphetamine addict, shot and knifed 37 people to death — 24 of them children — during a rampage on Thursday.

On Friday, BMA Education Department director Kriangkrai Chongcharoen visited Wat Ratchanadda School in Phra Nakhon district during inspections of Bangkok schools’ preparedness for possible shooting attacks.

Fear of copycat shooting sparks tighter security measures at Bangkok schools

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