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Saturday, January 7, 2012

Thailand: Road accidents kill over 300 during New Year holiday


The week long holiday, from Dec. 29, 2011 to Jan. 5, 2012, is a time when most Thais go home to visit with their families. But this large movement of people causes heavy traffic, and since this occurs at a time when the whole country is celebrating and perhaps driving a bit more dangerously, high casualty rates happen every year. According to the latest statistics of the Thai government, a total of 335 have been killed, 3,116 have been injured in 2,856 road accidents before Wednesday. Only one province out of Thailand s 75 provinces saw no accidents so far. Most of the accidents were caused by drunk driving while the second leading cause was speeding. Most of the vehicles involved in accidents were motorcycles - a common form of transportation in Thailand. Many of the deaths in these accidents happened because no helmets were being worn. One of the accidents took place when 12 passengers were on their way to a funeral and were killed. There were also a few casualties that involved foreign tourists. The number of casualties is slightly lower than last year due to the Thai government s setting up of traffic police stations, promoting traffic regulations and even handing out invigorating candies to keep drivers alert.

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