Overview of the Situation
On the first day of the long holiday weekend from July 28 to August 2, the nation’s roads witnessed a significant number of accidents, leading to almost 2,000 injuries and 22 fatalities. According to the Royal Thai Police (RTP), the main causes of these accidents were speeding, drowsiness, changing lanes, and dangerous overtaking.
Increased Traffic and Police Vigilance
Deputy National Police Chief Pol Gen Roy Ingkapairote, who also serves as the commander of the RTP’s Traffic Police Operation Centre, stated that his officers have been instructed to be vigilant for traffic offenses due to the increased number of journeys from towns and cities to the provinces during the long holiday weekend.
Road Safety Tips
To minimize the risk of road accidents, Pol Gen Roy advised drivers to examine their vehicles and study their routes before embarking on their trips.
Drunk Driving Arrests
On Friday, the police reported 157 arrests for drunk driving. The legal alcohol limit is 50 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), and any driver found exceeding this limit during a breathalyzer test will be charged with drunk driving.
Penalties for Drunk Drivers
Pol Lt Gen Nithithorn Chintakanon, the commander of the RTP’s national police chief office, announced that drivers under 20 without a valid license and over the breath/alcohol limit of 20 mg/dL will face penalties. First-time offenders can expect a jail sentence of up to one year or fines ranging from 5,000-10,000 baht. Repeat offenders within two years of their first conviction will likely face fines between 50-100,000 baht and will need to contest their sentence during a new court appearance.
State-run Transport Co reported that over 58,000 passengers left Bangkok on Friday, traveling to their hometowns using more than 1,000 cross-provincial buses. The company has prepared additional vans and buses to provide about 3,500 rides per day for an average of 35,000 passengers per day. To accommodate the high influx of travelers, Transport Co has sought assistance from the Bangkok Mass Transit Authority and the Taxi Association to offer connections at the capital’s five main bus terminals.
Travelers Returning to the City
Transport Co president Sanyalux Panwattanalikit anticipates that people will begin traveling back to the city on August 2-3. He reassured passengers that no one would be stranded at bus or coach stops during their return journey to the city.