Trains to South still in service, but no further than Yala

Trains to South still in service, but no further than Yala

Fewer passengers than usual wait for a train at the Hat Yai railway junction in Songkhla on Sunday morning. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)
Fewer passengers than usual wait for a train at the Hat Yai railway junction in Songkhla on Sunday morning. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)

SONGKHLA: An attack on a train on Saturday has left service to three southern border provinces -- Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat -- still continuing as usual, but trains terminate at Yala railway station and do not continue south to Sungai Kolok in Narathiwat.

A bomb exploded at 12.25pm on train No 986 on the Sungai Kolok-Bangkok route about one kilometre short of Tanyongmas station in Rangae district, Narathiwat province.

The passenger train had been repurposed to transport fruit, agricultural products and parcels from the deep South to Bangkok as part of measures to alleviate the hardship of people affected by travel restrictions and Covid-19 control measures.

Shortly after the bomb went off, gunshots were fired at the fifth carriage, where State Railway of Thailand (SRT) staff were sitting. None were hurt.

Following the incident, the SRT workers' union in Hat Yai, Songkhla, issued a statement condemning the perpetrators of the attack and called for security agencies to step up measures to protect trains and SRT staff from attacks.

On Sunday, trains to the three border provinces continued to operate as usual, including the train that was attacked on Saturday. However, all trains terminated at Yala station, with the remainder of the route to Sungai Kolok temporarily closed.

Railway police and defence volunteers were positioned on all southward trains from Songkla to step up security. Patrol units were deployed in high-risk areas along the route.

There were fewer passengers at the Hat Yai railway junction in Songkhla on Sunday morning.

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