Road toll continues to rise as revellers return to work

Road toll continues to rise as revellers return to work

Rescuers extricate the bodies of five people trapped in this sedan after it collided with a pickup truck in Phimai district in Nakhon Ratchasima on Tuesday. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)
Rescuers extricate the bodies of five people trapped in this sedan after it collided with a pickup truck in Phimai district in Nakhon Ratchasima on Tuesday. (Photo by Prasit Tangprasert)

The annual New Year holiday is seeing another rise in the number of deaths on the roads, although the number of accidents and injuries is down on last year, so far.

Six days into the seven dangerous days road safety campaign, 410 had people had died in road accidents, an increase of 7% on the same period of last year, according to the Road Safety Directing Centre that monitors the situation.

On a positive note, the number of accidents had dropped slightly, by 0.9%, to 3,425 and the number of people injured was down 2.4% to 3,516.

The seven-day period started on Dec 27 and ends on Wednesday night. The final statistics will be released on Thursday.

Nakhon Ratchasima had the highest accumulated death toll with 24, while Nakhon Si Thammarat had the most accidents, at 109, and the most reported injured, with 127 people.

One of the worst accidents was a crash involving a car and a pickup truck in Phimsai district of Nakhon Ratchasima on Tuesday, which took the lives of all five people returning to Bangkok in the sedan after  merit-making ceremony at a nearby temple.

Nakhon Ratchasima governor Wichien Chantharanothai on Wednesday called for stricter law enforcement  to reduce the accident rate with revellers returning to their workplaces after the long break.

Drink driving was still seen as the major single cause of accidents, followed by speeding, while the majority of accidents involved motorcycles, as in past years, according to the centre.

Lt Gen Somsak Somrak, chief of the Directorate of Civil Affairs, told a media briefing all provinces have been instructed to check motorists for alcohol and drug use, to get them off the roads.



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