A motorcyclist as been killed in southern Thailand after ramming into a roadside power pole while texting on a smartphone on Sunday. Police said the accident occurred on Sunday morning on a road in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province.
Eyewitnesses told police that the man, identified later as Pipatpong Meeboonlap, 29, was riding fast along the road while texting on a smartphone. As a car was overtaking him, the man was startled and lost control of his motorcycle.
He went off the road and rammed into a power pole. The motorcyclist sustained serious head injuries and was killed instantly. His motorcycle was also badly damaged.
Police also said the driver of the car did not bother to stop and kept on going.
Motorcycle street racers arrested Nationwide in Thailand
Meanwhile, police have ramped up efforts to crack down on illegal motorcycle street racers nationwide. Many of them returned to the streets after the Covid-19 curfew was lifted on June 14.
The Prime warned against motorcyclists street racing and said that police should take action against the racers.
Police arrested 109 such motorcycle racers, seized 11,743 motorcycles. They also prosecuted 3,088 shops for illegally modifying motorcycle parts. Most modifications were exhaust pipes that give motorcycles a loud noise.
Police also put 668 parents of the illegal motorcyclists racing on probation, the Bangkok Post reported.
Furthermore Provincial Police in the lower South of Thailand seized 237 motorcycles. They also seized 311 illegally modified exhaust pipes. Placing 175 young motorcyclists and 28 parents on probation.
Police in the northeastern province of Ubon Ratchathani arrested 85 young motorcyclists. They also seized 317 motorcycles and about 300 modified exhaust pipes.
The Provincial Police in Northern Thailand arrested six motorcyclists racing. They also put 1,921 motorcyclists and 212 parents on probation and seized 1,306 motorcycles.
Police in the northeastern province of Nakhon Ratchasima arrested 476 motorcyclists and seized 665 bikes.
The Provincial Police Region 7 which also covers lower south provinces put 5,009 motorcyclists on probation. They seized 4,632 bikes and 357 substandard motorcycle exhaust pipes.
New plans to curb street racing
Law enforcement is not enough to deal with street motorcycle racers, criminologists say, who are urging for prosecution against motorcycle shops and garages that modify motorcycle engines for racing purposes.
Pol Lt Col Kritsanapong Phutrakul, who chairs the Faculty of Criminology and Justice Administration, said the problem of street racing is caused by social factors.
“Police arrests do not solve the problem at its root cause so all parties should work together to eradicate street racing,”he said.
He suggested motorcycle modification garages should be inspected and their owners arrested in parallel with the capture of the racers themselves. The government also needs to figure out what steps it should take after arresting these young racers. They might return to the streets after being are released, he said.
He said the government should also educate parents when their children buy a motorcycle