Thailand’s usually busy streets were emptier on Thursday as the country entered its first day in a national state of emergency to tackle the spread of the new coronavirus.
The state of emergency allows Thailand’s government to set implement curfews, install checkpoints, censor the media, disperse gatherings and deploy the military for enforcement.
Checkpoints to monitor for coronavirus symptoms have been set up nationwide to regulate movement between provinces, but no lockdowns have been ordered yet except for confirmed or suspected cases of the disease.
Thailand has reported about 1,045 confirmed cases of the new virus, with four deaths.
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.
The vast majority of people recover from the new virus.
The new coronavirus has caused a global pandemic that has sickened at least 470,000 and killed 21,000 worldwide, crippled economies and forced restrictions on the movement of millions of people in an effort to stop the virus from spreading further and overwhelming health care systems.