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First Day of Songkran Road Toll – 468 Traffic Accidents, 46 Deaths and 482 Injured

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CHIANG RAI – Thailand’s Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith told a press briefing that there were 468 traffic accidents which killed 46 people and injured 482 others on April 11, the first day of Songkran festivals seven dangerous days, and the most common cause was drunk driving.

Drunk driving caused 34.62% of the accidents, followed by speeding at 26.92%, and motorcycles were involved in 78.47% of the accidents, the minister said.

The highest number of accidents, 20, was in Nakhon Si Thammarat province. The highest death toll, 4, was in Udon Thani and the highest number of injured people, 23, was in Nakhon Ratchasima, Mr Arkhom said.

Like in previous years, the most common cause of road accidents was drinking-driving (34.6%), followed by speeding (26.9%). Most crashes involved motorcycles (78.47%), said the minister.

Police and officials have set up 2,036 road checkpoints across the country during Songkran. A total of 709,464 vehicles were stopped at the checkpoints, with 163,584 motorists facing legal action for traffic rule violations. Of the offenders, 45,230 failed to wear crash helmets and 41,485 drove without licenses.

Courts of justice spokesman Suriyan Hongwilai said a total of 1,609 cases involving road traffic violations, were sent to lower courts on Thursday. The lower courts have already ruled on 1,609, or 73.8%, of the cases.

Most of the cases involved drink-driving (1,106), followed by driving under the influence of drugs (314). Others were driving without licenses.

There were 1,704 defendants prosecuted in the courts. They included 1,661 Thai nationals and 43 others were foreign nationals, said the Courts of Justice spokesman.