On November 10th, 2023, Dr. Cholnan Srikaew, the Minister of Public Health, publicly stated about an affected group by alcoholic beverages, drunk driving victims, who asked the Thai government for countermeasures from the proposed extended-hour services for entertainment venues.
As a representative from Public Health, Dr. Cholnan revealed to Thai national media that the Thai government policies must strike a balance between economic and health aspects. The living quality of the citizens must be protected as well.
“In regards to The entertainment zoning areas that extended the services to 4 AM as of December 15th, the Thai government has precautionary measures in place to support this according to Thai legal provisions. Especially, the protection of alcohol consumer groups aimed to prevent road accidents and other harmful acts,” said Cholnan.
For example, one proposal is that everybody must take an alcohol test before heading home, the test will be conducted by the entertainment venues and must show the legal limit blood alcohol level is less than 50 mg% or a taxi must be called for the patron. Another example is that the drinkers are prohibited from driving by any means, and the entertainment services must provide hail-riding services to them.
TPN notes these are only proposals and it is unclear how they would be enforced.
Cholnan further added, however, that further scrutiny will be discussed as to whether the owners of the entertainment venues could hold authority to conduct an alcohol test and refrain from selling alcohol to intoxicated people or not under current laws.