More Road Accidents This Holiday Period Despite Restrictions

Road Accidents Over New Year Holidays

Figures released yesterday revealed there were more accidents over the new year holiday period this year than last year, despite COVID-19-related travel and celebration restrictions.

The Transport Ministry reported that just under seven million people used public transport during the holiday period, 40% lower than expected, according to the information collected from 29th December 2020 to 2nd January 2021.

The ministry also said that individual car journeys into and out of Bangkok were 24% lower than forecast, Chayatham Phromsorn, permanent secretary for transport, told media in a press briefing yesterday.

According to inspections at checkpoints nationwide from 30th December, only one out of every 52,126 vehicles being checked was found be substandard, while 173 decks and rafts also tested safe for use with one vessel classified as unsafe.

No officer in the public transport system was found drunk or driving under influence, he said.

Nevertheless, despite less traffic on the roads, there were still more accidents than during the same “7 Deadly Days” last year.

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The accident tally from the Road Safety Directing Centre (RSDC) under the Ministry of Interior yesterday showed that from 29th December to 2nd January, there were 2,748, or 9% more incidents than during the 2019/20 holiday period. The death toll was 316, representing a 16.1% increase and the 2,741 injuries was a 6.8% jump.

Drunk driving accounted for 30.2% of all accidents, followed by speeding at 28.98%.

The largest share of the incidents involved motorcycle riders (79%) while 5.1% were pickup trucks and 3.5% private cars.

Most road accidents, 67%, occurred on straight stretches of road but involved excessive speed and/or inebriation, according to RSDC.

In terms of roads, 37% of accidents took place on highways and roads developed by the Land Transport Department, and 38% on local roads in villages or tambons.

It was also reported that 33% of accidents occurred between 4 pm and 8 pm, 22% between noon and 4 pm, and 15% between 8 am and noon.

Demographically, 30% of those injured or killed were aged over 50, 15% were 40-49 and 13% were 30-39.

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