MAHA SARAKHAM – Sixteen passengers and the driver were injured, four seriously, when an interprovincial bus rear-ended a trailer truck carrying a backhoe in the Northeastern Province of Maha Sarakham early on Thursday.
The accident occurred in front of a PTT petrol station in tambon Kaengling Chan around 12.30am, Pol Capt Visanukorn Kaewsrikhao, duty officer at Muang police station, said.
The truck carrying the excavator was preparing to make a U-turn when the Bangkok-Mukdahan tour bus crashed into the rear of it, witness Khosit Laosuwan, owner of the petrol station, said.
The impact knocked the backhoe off the trailer and the shovel and arm smashed through the front windscreen of the bus.
The truck was forced off the road and into a ditch. It was delivering the excavator for use in laying water pipes in front of the petrol station. The driver, identified only as Ied, fled after the crash.
The crash injured 17 people. Four of them, including bus driver Thanat Patthum, 53, were seriously hurt. Rescue workers took the injured to nearby hospitals.
Pol Capt Visanukorn said he would question the bus driver when he was well enough. A surveillance camera at the front of the bus would be examined for evidence of the cause of the crash.
The bus company, Nakhonchai Air, sent another bus to take unhurt passengers to their destinations.