An intoxicated Chon Buri man repeatedly stabbed himself in front of terrified passersby in the Sri Racha district yesterday. A local meatball vendor said the man, 54 year old Somchai, walked up to his shop while intoxicated, grabbed a knife from him, and stabbed himself in the abdomen four times.
The vendor, Chaovalit Somsri, said that before Somchai started stabbing himself, he had seemed to be in a good mood. Somchai had been dancing to music in front of the vendor, Chaovalit said.
According to Chaovalit, Somchai was an alcoholic, The Pattaya News reported.
Rescuers provided Somchai with first aid before rushing him to Somdech Phra Boromarajatewi Na Sri Racha Hospital.
According to Bangkok Hospital, research shows that up to five million Thais have a drinking problem. However, only 2% are in treatment for alcohol abuse.
In December, it was revealed that a survey of 84,000 Thai respondents found that 28% over 15 years old or more drank alcohol in the past 12 months. Results showed that 9% of 15 to 19 year olds drank alcohol, despite the law forbidding the sale of alcohol to anyone under 20 years old.
Among adult drinkers, 43.8% said that they drank at least once per week, 35.9% said they drank heavily and 31.6% admitted to drink-driving.
By region, northern and northeastern provinces were home to far more big drinkers than central and southern Thailand. The top Thai drinking provinces were Nan, Chiang Rai, Phrae, Mukdahan, and Phayao.
The hospital says…
“If you have strong cravings for alcohol, can’t control your drinking, show withdrawal symptoms when you stop drinking and continue to drink despite health or other alcohol-related problems, then you are in danger. If a relative, friend, or colleague has expressed concern about your drinking and maybe asked you to cut down, then it is time to get help.”
Will Thailand ever tackle its alcohol problems? We’ll see.
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