Songkran festival sees surge in road accidents across Thailand

Thailand is grappling with a surge in road accidents, with an alarming tally of 2,044 mishaps leading to 2,060 injuries and a tragic loss of 287 lives. The Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) released these figures as part of their Seven Days of Road Safety Campaign, which covered the Songkran festival period from April 11 to April 17.

The northern province of Chiang Rai topped the list for the highest number of fatalities and accidents, recording 17 deaths and 82 accidents respectively. The province of Phrae, unfortunately, saw the most injuries with a total of 80 individuals affected.

The Seven Days of Road Safety Campaign is an annual initiative by the DDPM to promote safer road practices, particularly during the Songkran festival, a time when road accidents typically spike due to increased travel and festivities. The campaign’s objective is not only to raise awareness but also to enforce traffic rules more stringently to ensure the safety of all road users, said a DDPM spokesperson.

“Despite our best efforts, the number of accidents, injuries, and deaths remains high. We urge everyone to observe traffic rules, avoid drink driving, and ensure their vehicles are in good condition before hitting the road.

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The Songkran festival, also known as the Thai New Year, is a time of celebration for the Thai people. It is often marked with water fights, visits to temples, and spending time with family. However, the festival period also sees a significant increase in road traffic as people travel across the country to their hometowns.

The DDPM has been proactive in trying to reduce the number of road accidents during this period. Their initiatives include setting up road safety checkpoints, increasing patrols, and running public awareness campaigns on the dangers of drink driving and speeding.

Looking at the statistics, Chiang Rai recorded the most accidents and fatalities, highlighting a need for further intervention in this region. Phrae, with the highest number of injuries, also requires attention, said the DDPM spokesperson.

“We need everyone’s cooperation to make our roads safer. We are doing our best, but it is also up to each individual to take responsibility for their actions on the road.”

The statistics are a stark reminder of the dangers that can come with increased road traffic during festive periods.

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Top is a multifaceted news writer with a keen interest in real estate and travel. Top currently covers local Thai news at Thaiger. As a travel buff, Top blogs about his travels- around the world and Thailand- during his free time.

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