39 killed, 439 crashes on first of 'seven dangerous days'

39 killed, 439 crashes on first of 'seven dangerous days'

Thirty-nine people were killed and 456 injured in 439 road accidents nationwide on Tuesday, the first of the seven dangerous days (Dec 29 to Jan 4) of the New Year festival, Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith said on Wednesday.

Mr Arkhom said drink-driving was the cause of the greatest number of accidents, about 27%, followed by speeding, 20%.

He said about 90% of accidents involved motorcycles, with the peak time for crashes being between 4pm and 8pm.

Chiang Mai reported 17 accidents, the most of any province, and the highest number of injuries at 19. The most road deaths, four, were reported in Mukdahan.

Col Sirichan Ngathong, deputy spokeswoman of the National Council for Peace and Order, said authorities reported catching 1,228 motorcyclists driving drunk and had impounded 213 bikes between Dec 25 and 29.

In the same period there were 679 drink-driving violations by public and private motorists, with 56 cars and 213 motorcycles impounded and 169 driver's licences suspended.

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