BANGKOK has had the most road fatalities at 14, while Chiang Mai has the highest tally of people injured, at 104, as well as the most accidents with 100 cases over the first four days of the “seven dangerous days” of the Songkran Festival.
The total number of road accidents from April 11-14 stood at 2,216, which left 259 people dead and 2,378 injured, Lt-General Theerawat Boonyawat, head of the Civil Affairs Division of the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) Secretariat, told the press at the Road Safety Directing Centre yesterday.
There were 11 provinces – Trat, Pattani, Phatthalung, Phrae, Yala, Ranong, Lamphun, Samut Sakhon, Sing Buri, Nong Bua Lamphu and Angthong – that did not report any deaths from road accidents, he said.
On Thursday alone, 555 accidents claimed 78 lives and left 601 people injured.
Most accidents – 79 per cent – involved motorcycles and many stemmed from drunk driving (40 per cent), followed by speeding (32 per cent).
Most accidents – 34 per cent – occurred between 4pm and 8pm and more than half of the victims (55 per cent) were in the working-age group.
Officials at 2,128 checkpoints charged 112,617 motorists, 33,381 of them for failure to wear a motorcycle helmet and 30,701 for failure to show a driver’s licence.
Highways and key transport hubs upcountry started to see crowds as some holidaymakers yesterday began to make the journey back to work in Bangkok and its neighbouring provinces earlier than most to avoid heavy traffic this weekend.
Meanwhile, Colonel Peerawat Saengthong, the Internal Security Operations Command spokesman, said Army chief General Teerachai Nakwanich had instructed officers to monitor secondary roads in order to reduce accidents while also preventing drug smuggling, as many people start to return to Bangkok.
In Chiang Mai, police manning checkpoints impounded 640 vehicles from drunk drivers from April 11-14 under the NCPO order for strict action against drunk driving.