12 July 2024

Two people died every hour, or 17,831 in total, in road accidents in Thailand in 2020, according to the Thai Health Promotion Foundation.

About 70% of road accents involved people of working age, 16 to 60 years old, but accidents among the aged is also on the rise, reflecting the fact that Thailand is becoming an aging society.

According to Dr. Wittaya Chartbanchachai, chairman of the Provincial-level Accident Prevention Support Plan, a low priority has been attached to road accidents involving aging people because fewer were involved than younger people.

He said that recent statistics should make authorities rethink and develop measures to reduce road accidents involving elderly people.

According to the foundation, motorcyclists and their pillion riders accounted for 74% of the fatalities and this has been the trend for several years because many, particularly pillion riders, do not wear crash helmets.

The International Health Policy Program said in its report last year that, if all pillion riders wear crash helmets, the death toll will likely drop by 36%.

Dr. Wittaya also said that lax law enforcement in Thailand contributes to the high incidence of road accidents, noting that the stopping of traffic violators varies between provinces.

In Tak province, for an example, there were 5,521 stops per 100,000 of the population for driving under the influence while, in Pattani and Lop Buri provinces, there were none at all. 47,830 per 100,000 were stopped in Tak for not wearing a crash helmet, while only 54 were stopped in Maha Sarakham.

According to findings in 2020, the ten provinces with the highest road accident fatalities are Rayong, Nakhon Nayok, Chanthaburi, Chon Buri, Chainat, Prachin Buri, Saraburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Lamphun and Suphan Buri.

The ten provinces with the lowest number of road accident fatalities are Amnat Charoen, Yala, Bangkok, Satun, Pattani, Narathiwat, Mae Hong Son, Samut Songkhram, Nonthaburi and Udon Thani.