News is just coming in of another night bus crashing in Thailand. First reports suggest that ten people have been killed in this accident, 5 foreigners and 5 Thais (*). There were also 17 injured, 10 of whom are seriously injured. The 24-seater VIP tour bus left Bangkok at 7:30 p.m. and was heading to the holiday island of Koh Pha Ngan. The accident happened at about 5:30 a.m. this morning in Surat Thani. The coach crashed into an electricity pole and rolled over. Police at the scene told reporters that it looks like that the driver fell asleep at the wheel. The driver was among the dead. At this moment, the nationalities of the dead are unknown. Follow me on Twitter @RichardBarrow and @191Thailand for all the latest news.
If you have been following my @191Thailand Twitter account you would probably know already that road accidents involving buses and passengers vans happen often. I always advise people to avoid night buses in Thailand as they have a bad reputation. The southern route in particular is notorious for robberies. Many foreign tourists have complained that their bags were ransacked and things stolen while they were sleeping. Just recently, a foreign tourist was stabbed by a bus attendant while they were arguing about missing valuables. Many of these buses are operating illegally and without license. Drivers are not checked for alcohol levels or drugs and are sometimes known to fall asleep at the wheel.
(*) Newspapers the next day are saying 6 foreigners dead though only one Indian has been named so far.
UPDATE: List of people who were injured
1. Roberta (Bertie) Norton, British
2. Jonathan Bennet, British
3. Push Pinder Kuma, India
4. Pinry Jain, India
5. Aashima Jain, India
6. Jasmine Maglige, Luxembourg
7. Figue Magias Michael, Luxembourg
8. Kapl Gaya, Zimbabwe
9. Thitima Klomklieng, 27, Thai
10. Phirasak Yensiri, 26, Thai
11. Sodsai Kakarun, 21, Thai
12. Namphet Poonperm, 41, Thai
13. Komsan Nuntasahakitnukul, 36, Thai
14. Jiraporn Laokamkaew, 43, Thai
15. Prom Pijaranapong 64, Thai
16. Pitawun Suwanprasert, 35, Thai
Surat Thani Hospital (66 77) 272 231 and (66 77) 284 231; and Kanjanadit Hospital at (66 77) 244518-9.