Bangkok Readies for Songkran, Deploys 1,600 Safety Personnel

More than 1,600 officials and volunteers are set to be on duty to ensure safety during the three-week-long Songkran festivities in Bangkok’s Phra Nakhon district. Targeted security efforts will focus on tourist hotspots such as Khao San and Silom roads.

Kosol Singhanat, the Director of Phra Nakhon District, expects a surge of visitors to converge on three main locales: Khao San Road, Sanam Luang, and Phra Athit Road during the holiday period.

The government will host the Maha Songkran World Water Festival 2024 at Sanam Luang, along with Wisut Kasat’s Thephi Songkran beauty pageant at Santi Chai Prakan Park on Phra Athit Road.

To ensure the safety and smooth operation of the Songkran celebrations, the district office plans to deploy at least 1,600 personnel, including firefighters and nurses, at key event locations.

With festivities kicking off on April 12, preparations include installing AI-equipped CCTV cameras and emergency stations along Khao San Road starting April 11.

Singhanat also assured that despite partial road closures, the availability of shuttle buses and taxis would facilitate seamless transit during the festival.

Sanga Ruangwattanakul, the head of the Khao San Business Association, shared that this year’s Songkran celebration will feature five floating Buddha statues, each adorned with holy water from five distinguished temples across the city.

Ruangwattanakul added that from April 13 to 15, Khao San Road will be cleared of vehicles to allow for undisturbed celebrations until 9 pm, after which local businesses and restaurants will resume operations.

Additionally, Bang Rak District Director Tharaporn Amnuaysan has announced that a section of Silom Road will be off-limits to traffic from noon to midnight on April 13 and 14 for a special event co-hosted with the Culture Ministry.

Culture Minister Sermsak Pongpanich outlined that the government-led Songkran event will commence on April 11, extending to other key cities including Samut Prakan, Chon Buri, Chiang Mai, Phuket, and Khon Kaen.

Furthermore, the ministry supports activities at four World Heritage sites: the Sukhothai-Kamphaeng Phetch Historical Parks, Ayutthaya Historical Park, Udon Thani’s Ban Chiang Archaeological Site, and Petchabun’s Si Thep Historical Park.

The Tourism and Sports Ministry anticipates that the extended Songkran holiday will generate approximately US$1.6 billion in tourism revenue.