Some 39 people died in traffic accidents on Wednesday, the first of the “seven dangerous days” around the New Year holiday period in which road accidents tend to spike, authorities said.
Speaking in his capacity as chairman of a special sub-committee of the Road Safety Directing Centre, Boontham Lersukheekasem, director-general of the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department, said 362 accidents were reported, with 362 people injured.
Speeding was a factor in 34.6% of the accidents, while in 23.8% of the accidents the driver was intoxicated, he said, adding over 81% of the reports involved motorcycles.
Most accidents took place between 3-6pm, and people over the age of 50 were involved in about a third of the crashes, Mr Lersukheekasem said.
Some 18,142 people were charged for not wearing helmets, 7,939 for not using seatbelts and 5,007 for unsafe motorcycles. Ratchaburi took the top spot for most accidents reported with a total of 13, Nakhon Ratchasima reported the most deaths at five, while Loei had the most injuries with 14 people hurt.