Eighty-five people were killed in road accidents across the country on the third day of the Songkran festival’s “seven dangerous days’’, bringing the total death toll to 167.
There were 748 road accidents reported nationwide on Thursday. This resulted in 85 people dying and 752 being injured, Tourism and Sports Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul said on Friday.
Chiang Mai and Udon Thani provinces recorded the largest number of road accidents on Thursday, at 33 each. Chiang Mai also had the highest number of injuries, at 37.
Sakon Nakhon and Bangkok saw the highest number of deaths at 5 each.
Day 1 – 33 dead, 420 injured on first day of Songkran holiday
Day 2 – Songkran death toll jumps to 82
Day 3 – Carnage as Songkran death rate doubles on day 3
Day 4 – Songkran death toll reaches 226, thousands injured
Day 5 – Songkran road casualties significantly lower than annual average
These figures brought the accumulated deaths to 167 and injuries to 1,795 from 1,743 traffic accidents over the three days from April 11 to April 13, said Ms Kobkarn.
Drink-driving was the major cause of accidents, accounting for 48.80%, followed by speeding, 27.54%.
At 167, the number of accumulated deaths was down by 14, or 7.73%, on the 181 deaths over the same period last year.
Although the number of Songkran road accidents and fatalities to date had dropped this year, the government does not want to focus solely on comparing statistics, but more on creating a culture of road safety, the minister said.
The road safety campaign would not be limited to the Songkran period. Studies would be made of the causes of road accidents over the past five years, and this would be used in working out measures to reduce the number of accidents, she said.
The Road Safety Directing Centre has, meanwhile, amended the road toll for April 12, increasing the fatalities from 48 to 54, with injuries reduced from 630 to 624, after 6 accident victims died.