Phuket Songkran road toll ends: 3 dead, 43 injured
PHUKET: The “Seven Days of Danger” Songkran road-safety campaign ended in Phuket yesterday with no road fatalities over the final four days, resulting in a final tally of three dead and 43 injured in 44 reported accidents.
As anticipated by many, the most dangerous day was April 13, when two people died and 10 others were injured in 11 reported accidents. Friday the 13th marked the arrival of the Thai New Year, when Thais celebrated in the streets by dousing passers-by with water and, in many cases, drinking heavily.
At police checkpoints set up around the island from April 11 to 17, a total of 38,316 vehicles were stopped for inspections, with 3,146 people arrested or fined.
The most common infraction was failure to produce a driver’s license (1,441 people charged), followed by:
- failure to wear a crash helmet while riding a motorbike (1,179)
- failure to wear a seat belt while in the front seat of a car (349)
- operating an unroadworthy vehicle (115)
- drunk driving (24)
- using a mobile phone while operating a vehicle (16)
- failure to observe traffic signals (15)
- driving on the wrong side of the road (4)
- dangerous overtaking (3)
No drivers were arrested or fined for speeding in Phuket over the seven-day period.
Of the 43 injured, 67% were males and more than 95% were on motorbikes.
Drunk driving was designated as the most common cause of accidents (43.1%) , followed by dangerous overtaking (15.7%), poor visibility (15.7%) and a variety of other factors.
Last year during the Songkran “Seven Days of Danger” campaign seven people died and 52 suffered serious injuries in 43 reported accidents.
As head of the National Road Safety Center Deputy Prime Minister Yongyuth Wichaidit this morning announced that this year’s nationwide death toll was 320, up 49 from last year.
Surat Thani had the most deaths, 13.
There were no deaths reported in six provinces, including three in the southern region: Trang, Pattani, Ranong and Satun.
Of 3,320 recorded road accident injuries reported nationwide, Chiang Rai had the most of any province, with 124.
Drunk driving was given as the cause of 39.2% of all road accidents in Thailand during the period, up less than 1% from last year, DPM Yongyuth said.
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