'Throw out masks separately'
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment yesterday reminded Thais to discard their used face masks in a separate bin so they can be easily sorted from other waste.
The ministry's permanent secretary, Jatuporn Buruspat, said the new wave of Covid-19 infections had driven up the number of discarded face masks as people changed them more frequently as a precaution against the disease.
As the face masks were in contact with human fluids, they needed to be separated from general waste to be disposed of properly, said Mr Jatuporn.
"Used face masks should disposed in closed bins set aside for infectious waste so they can be more sorted more efficiently, so as to prevent them harming the environment," he added.
He asked for people to cooperate by cutting off the straps of their used masks and dispose of them in separate bins, or in a tied plastic bag. It would be better if the bags were labelled, he said, so the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration and other authorities could better sort out the waste.
Meanwhile, the ministry has ordered all national parks, museums, botanical gardens and zoos run by the ministry to welcome holidaymakers with strict health measures during Songkran by limiting maximum capacity and enforcing social distancing.
The permanent secretary also asked all visitors to follow health and safety instructions, have their temperatures checked, maintain social distancing, wear face masks and wash their hands.
Visitors can pre-book their visits online through the QueQ application to reduce overcrowding in those areas.