11 July 2024

Two people were killed and two others injured when a support beam of a U-turn flyover bridge, undergoing maintenance, collapsed on Sunday night, forcing the Highways Department to temporarily close the road to in-bound traffic on the busy Rama II Road in Samut Sakhon province.

Maintenance of the bridge was suspended, pending an investigation into the cause of the cave-in, said Highways Department Director-General Sarawut Songsivilai last night.

It is reported that workers were about to pour cement on the flyover bridge, in front of the Vibharam Hospital, when the beam suddenly collapsed onto a few cars on the in-bound lanes of Rama II Road, damaging three of them.

One person was crushed to death in his car and an official of the Highways Department, who was supervising the maintenance work, was also killed. Two others were injured.

Sarawut, who visited the scene of the accident last night, told the media that the U-turn flyover bridge was built in 1993 and has been under repair since June 23rd. Although several thousand cars use the flyover each day, and calls have been made to completely rebuild the bridge following a fire some time ago, he offered an assurance that the structure of the bridge remains strong.

Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob told the media that he has ordered the Highways Department to investigate the cause of the cave-in immediately and to help the victims.

For the time being, motorists bound for Bangkok are being advised to divert to a secondary road at kilometre marker 38 in Ban Phaeo district and turn into Phra Pratone Ban Bo-Nakhon Pathom- Petchkasem-Borommaratchachonnani-Bangkok Road instead.

On September 30th last year, a ten-wheel dump truck crashed into a supporting beam of a pedestrian bridge in Mae Sot district of Tak, causing the bridge to collapse onto the truck. Two people were killed.

On June 29th last year, a trailer truck crashed into a pedestrian bridge in Wang Noi district of Ayutthaya, causing the bridge to fall onto the truck. No one was killed or injured.