Thailand reports 548 new virus cases, highest daily spike

Thailand reported more than 500 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, the countrys highest daily tally.

The 548 new cases, most of them connected with an outbreak at a wholesale seafood market on the outskirts of Bangkok, come after the country saw only a small number of infections over the past several months due to strict border and quarantine controls.

Health officials said 516 of the new cases, most of them migrant workers from Myanmar, were found in connection with the outbreak at the Klang Koong shrimp market in Samut Sakhon province.

All of those infections were linked to a 67-year-old seafood vendor who tested positive for the coronavirus earlier, the director-general of the Department of Medical Sciences, Opas Karnkawinpong, said in a news conference broadcast to all TV channels on Saturday night.

The first case at the market was confirmed on Thursday, followed by 13 more on Friday.

Samut Sakhon Gov Veerasak Vichitsangsri said late Saturday that strict measures, including a 10 pm-5 am curfew, will be taken in the province to combat the outbreak. The restrictions will be in effect until January 3.

Samut Sakhon is 34 kilometers (21 miles) southwest of Bangkok, the capital.

With fewer than 5,000 cases and 60 deaths, Thailand has been able to largely control the virus. Prior to this weeks outbreak, there had been very few cases of local transmission in recent months, as life returned largely back to normal.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)