BANGKOK – Thailand’s Road Safety Directing Centre has reported that during the Seven Dangerous Days of the Songkran holiday their were 3,338 accidents reported, 386 killed and 3,442 people injured.
The figures were released by the Road Safety Directing Centre on Thursday show a 10% decline in accidents, 7.7% decline in road fatalities and 1.7% decline in injuries from last years 7 dangerous days of Songkran New Year.
Lop Buri and Udon Thani Provinces recorded the most deaths, with 15 each, Chiang Mai and Nakhon Sri Thammarat provinces topped the charts with 128 accidents each, followed by Chiang Rai with 96 and Songkhla with 91.
Impaired driving was given as the most common cause of accidents, followed by speeding. Most accidents involved motorcycles. Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon suggested harsher punishments for traffic violators as a possible solution.
Deputy Interior Minister Suthee Boonmak told a media briefing that drivers under the influence of alcohol and who ignore speed limits or drive against the traffic flow would be the prime targets for law enforcement in keeping the figures lower in future.
The Thai New Year of Songkran is a joyous occasion when many travel to their hometowns to spend time with family while herds of tourists pour in to partake in the (in)famous nationwide water-fighting festivities.
More people on the roads, more partying, more drinking and lax enforcement of traffic laws translates into more accidents. Twice a year, the media closely follows the “seven dangerous days” during the international New Year’s and Songkran, which this year ran April 11-17.