Smiley Masks for Thai Highway Patrol

Thailand, nicknamed "The Land of Smiles" by countless tourist books, are living up to its name: the highway policemen in Thailand will be wearing smiley masks to "lift the mood of motorists":

The new cloth masks, which hook behind the ears and cover the mouth and nose, will help "reduce the stress from drivers when they see the police," said Somyos, the Highway Police commander.

To that end, he said, some 200 police booths would also distribute holy water, chewing gum and mints.

He defended his force when asked why drivers needed smiley masks and gum and holy water to calm down when approached by a patrolman.

"The police are not that scary," he said. "When I was in the United States, their highway police seemed to be more fierce than Thai police. I was scared of them."


Photo: Sarot Meksophawannakul/Bangkok Post

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