Shortly before 7 pm on Monday, an explosion occurred in central Bangkok. Our immediate concern was with our friends and partners in Bangkok, along with their colleagues and families. We were also concerned about the safety of the many TBEX community members who are living in Bangkok. Preliminary inquiries lead us to believe that our friends and community members are all safe and accounted for.

While much in still unknown about the situation, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has provided us with a statement about the situation.

Bangkok, 10: 00 hrs. (GMT+7)

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) would like to convey the deepest sympathy and condolences to all the victims of the blast and their families at this traumatic time. The thoughts and prayers of the Thai people are with you.

Thai authorities have stepped up security at key locations in Bangkok following the explosion that took place on Monday (17 August 2015 around 19.00 hrs.) at the city’s Ratchaprasong Intersection. The explosion is currently under police investigation. The spokesman of the Royal Thai Police stated that there have been a total of 22 casualties and 123 injuries as of 18 August 2015 at 07.00 hrs. The concerned authorities are contacting the families of victims of the blast and helping the injured to get medical treatment in local hospitals. The Thai tourism industry has mobilised the support of its members to assist and facilitate tourists affected by the incident, such as providing interpreters and helping with immediate travel arrangements.

The Royal Thai Police have requested that locals and tourists exercise caution when out and about in Bangkok. The Police have also increased their presence and put extra security in place at all of Bangkok’s key tourist areas in response to the incident. Citywide patrols are in place to ensure the safety of locals and visitors to the Thai capital.

Meanwhile, overall life in the city is continuing as normal. All public services and banks are available to the public. As for tourist businesses, other tourist sites, hotels, restaurants, tour operators, and shopping malls remain open, while transportation links, major roads and airports continue to operate. This includes Bangkok’s BTS Skytrain and MRT services and both Don Muang and Suvarnabhumi International Airports receive domestic and international flights.

In addition, events that the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is supporting remain as scheduled, such as the “Way of Silk, the Way of Thai: A Tribute to Her Majesty the Queen” silk exhibition in Bangkok during, TBEX Asia 2015 during 15-17 October and the nationwide Loi Krathong festivities in November, as well as all other domestic and overseas marketing activities.

TAT is monitoring and assessing the situation in Bangkok and will be providing regular updates.