Thursday – the first of the “seven dangerous days” of Songkran 2019 – saw 46 people killed and 482 injured in 468 road accidents, Transport Minister Arkhom Termpittayapaisith told reporters at the Road Safety Centre in Bangkok on Friday.
Most of the accidents, 20, occurred in Nakhon Ratchasima, as did the greatest number of injuries, 23, while Udon Thani had the most fatalities, four.
Arkhom said most accidents involved drunk driving (34.6 per cent) and speeding (26.9 per cent) and warned that drunk drivers involved in a fatal crash would certainly be jailed.
He said 667,000 people left Bangkok for other provinces on Thursday alone – the largest single-day exodus for Songkran on record.
Arkhom said the Songkran safety campaign aimed to make drivers sure observe the speed limit and keep their headlights on and that they and their passengers wear seatbelts, or helmets if on a motorcycle.
He noted that all public-transport vehicles have GPS so they can be monitored for speeding and the vehicles’ condition was inspected. Their drivers were also routinely checked for sobriety.