The Thai government has issued a warning to drivers who are travelling during the Songkran Festival, urging them to be careful on the road. This warning comes after the Thailand Road Accidents Data Centre for Road Safety Culture (ThaiRSC) reported 74 fatalities and 2,322 injuries on the first day of the “Seven Deadly Days” of the Songkran Festival. As of today, on day two, there have been 37 fatal injuries up to now and 1,771 injuries reported.
Chotnarin Kerdsom, the Interior Deputy Permanent Secretary, stated that speeding was the primary cause of “Seven Deadly Days” accidents (35%), followed by cutting in front of other vehicles (25%). Most accidents involved motorcycles (79%), and the majority of crashes occurred on main roads (87%), followed by highways (48%).
The provinces of Pathum Thani, Phetchabun, and Loei had the most “Seven Deadly Days” road deaths, with two each. Phatthalung had the most accidents, with 14 reported, and the highest number of injuries, with 18 reported.
The Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department Chief, Boontham Lertsukheekasem, noted that many people were leaving Bangkok to celebrate Songkran in their home provinces, causing heavy traffic build-ups. He urged motorists to strictly abide by traffic rules.
ThaiRSC reported that there were 939,713 road accidents in Thailand last year, indicating a 4.7% increase from the previous year. The data, released last Friday, revealed that 14,737 lives were lost, and 924,799 people were injured in these accidents, with 536 fatalities and 7,885 injuries among foreigners, reported The Nation.
ThaiRSC also reported that the average cost per accident was around 200,000 baht, with most accidents occurring during the morning rush hour, especially between 10am and 11am. More than half of these accidents, or 55.9%, involved motorbikes.
Moreover, during the annual “Seven Deadly Day” (December 29 to January 4) when people travelled to their hometowns to celebrate the new year, the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department’s Road Safety Centre recorded 2,440 road accidents. These accidents resulted in 2,437 injuries and 317 deaths, with Surat Thani having the highest number of accidents at 79 and Kanchanaburi having the highest number of injuries at 81. Chiang Rai recorded the highest number of deaths at 15.
The Thai government is hoping for a reduction in the number of deaths during the “Seven Deadly Days” of the Songkran Festival.
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