Seriously, how bad will it be over Songkran?

yychow0812

Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2012
I would like some good, constructive and objective advice about the riding conditions on the roads over the Songkran period.


Over Christmas / New Year last year, together with my other half, I did a 3,600 km loop starting from Bangkok, heading out towards Ubon, turning North to Udon, onto Phu Chi Fah, Chiang Khong, Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Pai, MHS, Mae Sariang, Mae Sot and back to Bangkok. It remains one of the best holidays of my life (and that includes skiing in Mt. Buller to Meribel to Aspen as well as sailing the BT Challenger to Isle of Wight).


This songkran however, the other half is away overseas till June and I'm stumped as to how to spend my Songkran holidays. Was thinking of getting on the Versys and riding up to Nan and thereabouts but I'm a little concerned with all the alarmist reports of how dangerous the roads are going to be.


What's the general consensus here guys and gals? Should I go for it? Any one interested to join me?
 

LUFC

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2011
Bikes
Berg 300, KTM 350, Trials Scoot
It's bad, search for "death toll songkran holidays" and you'll see the reports are not alarmist.

On average 50 people die each day of the holiday, 90+% on bikes.

Northern Provinces like C Mai, Nan have some of the very highest rates.
 

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
Buckets of ice thrown in you're face at 60km/h, drunk people doing stupid things everywhere, highly advisable to leave the bike at home.
 

Lone Rider

Blokes Who Can
Joined
Jan 29, 2011
Location
Chiangmai
Bikes
4 Wheels
Yes, it is quite bad like Phil said. There are quite a few youngsters and also older ones who try to thrown buckets of water (with or without ice) at bikes ridden by girls who then often swerve to miss the water. Unfortunately that does not always work out well and they may crash or hit you riding in the opposite direction. Later in the day you will find plenty of motorcyclists who have been drinking all day and may no longer have a clue of where and in what direction they going. The you have a the people who normally just drive their car from home to work and back and now suddenly have decided that they need to travel long distances, something they are not used to and they get tired. Coupled with the intake of alcoholic refreshments during the day things may get a bit difficult.

Riding is possible but you will have to be 100% alert at what is happening around you and anticipate what will be happening around you. Two years ago I was in my truck and there were a few young guys sitting quietly along the road with buckets with water and drinking beer. Suddenly someone saw a girl coming from the other side and he jumped up with his bucket and jumped in front of my car as my car would have prevented him from hitting his target. Luckily I had good brakes so I only hit his bucket and not the dumbass guy himself. So I would advise to stay off the bike during the 13-16 April period and enjoy Songkran in Nan where things can be quite wild also in town.
 

yychow0812

Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2012
Thanks for all the advice gents. It's pretty much as I thought, the main highways should be ok, city streets should be avoided as much as possible. I don't mind being doused though I would want to make sure that I can see it coming first and slow right down and let myself be soaked - it's no worse than riding in an heavy rain. I guess a lot of the accidents happen when the motorcyclist tries to avoid being doused and then losing control of the bike due to a combination of wet surface and wrong throttle control.

Drunk drivers are another thing but then we see many of them everyday on the roads anyway.

Take care all
 

LivinLOS

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 10, 2011
Bikes
Gas Gas 250 (Trials), YZ250 (enduro), DRZ440 (Supermoto) CBR900 Streetfighter (scary !!)
Thanks for all the advice gents. It's pretty much as I thought, the main highways should be ok, city streets should be avoided as much as possible. I don't mind being doused though I would want to make sure that I can see it coming first and slow right down and let myself be soaked - it's no worse than riding in an heavy rain. I guess a lot of the accidents happen when the motorcyclist tries to avoid being doused and then losing control of the bike due to a combination of wet surface and wrong throttle control.

Drunk drivers are another thing but then we see many of them everyday on the roads anyway.

Take care all
The other thing is, they often think its a hoot, to hide behind a parked car or something, leaping put at the last second to lob 5 plus kgs of water in your face.. If your doing 50 kph on an open stretch of rd it's an impact.
 

bigntall

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Like others have echoed tis a time to be wary as all the usual dangers are magnified. However if you've been here a bit the novelty of another Songkran in a metropolitan area is often something to be avoided. I have used the holiday in the past as an excuse to get onto the more rural roads. Songkran for me was a lot more palatable in the remote areas. It harbors the same antics but with less people is more tolerable and can actually be enjoyed. Here getting soaked in a village up near Doi Ahn Khan. DSC04805-L.jpg So if you're looking for a diversion and a different experience of Songkran the more rural locations are a decent experience assuming you understand the risks that Lone Rider has posted about regarding travelling during these times.
 

VietHorse

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Location
Ho Chi Minh City - Vietnam
Bikes
Hornet250, Shadow400, SuperFour400, Hornet919 x 2, VFR800 x 2
Buckets of ice thrown in you're face at 60km/h, drunk people doing stupid things everywhere, highly advisable to leave the bike at home.
I heard that there is quite numbers of people killed during that period every year. But what you said is super strange to me. That's killing people, me think.
Not only the bike, all the electronic devices like cellphone, camera.. should be well covered.
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
In reading the thread......my signature applies!
 

Ally

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Feb 23, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai
Bikes
PCX - with custom valve caps
@ yychow, the raised volume (pun intended) of drunk drivers at this time of year also drive on highways too.

It is better to travel by 4 wheels during this period if at all but then the dangers change, 4 wheels hitting 2 wheels or the water thrower themselves.

This is the most dangerous time of year, it' not to be taken lightly, please stay off the roads, especially with your bike.

I look forward to your ride reports for the 17th onwards ;)

Hey !!! Happy Songkran - Sawasdee pi mai :)

Ally
 

Loop

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2011
Bikes
VFR 800 PCX 150
I think it`s a good time to stay off the roads as the sheer volume of traffic means there`s just more of everything that Thai roads have to offer plus the wet and dry patches and sneaky bucket attacks mentioned above.

In the end the most palatable Songkran is in Patong where it lasts for 2 days and strictly policed...
 

Attachments

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
A total of 39 deaths and 342 injuries in 326 Thailand road accidents nationwide was reported on Thursday, the first day of the Songkran holiday's



BANGKOK, April 12 -- A total of 39 deaths and 342 injuries in 326 Thailand road accidents nationwide was reported on Thursday, the first day of the Songkran holiday's "seven dangerous days", Minister of Transport Chadchart Sittipunt said here on Friday.

Mr Chadchart said that according to statistics recorded by the Road Safety Centre, the Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation on April 11, the first day of the seven day campaign to cut road accidents, there were 326 road accidents, 17 less than the first day of the previous year; 39 died, nine more than last year's daily record and 342 were injured, 31 less than last year.

Drunken driving remains the major cause of accidents at nearly one in three -- 29 per cent -- followed by speeding, he said.

The highest number of accidents on Thursday, 14, occurred equally in the southern province of Nakhon Si Thammarat and the northern province of Chiang Mai followed by Nakhon Ratchasima with 13 accidents, he said.

Chiang Mai also saw the most injuries, with 17 people.


MCOT online news)
Tags: Songkran accident Nakhon SI Thammarat Chiang Mai ข่าว English News General ข่าวนำสไลด์โชว์ ข่าวทันสถานการณ์



ย้อนกลับ
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
How bad is it? Death toll on day one up by 30%!

Bkk post mentioned: "Provinces with the most fatalities were Kanchanaburi, Samut Sakhon, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Ayutthaya, Yasothon and Songkhla, with three each".....
Analyse that a bit and consider what we see here, these are NOT the Northern provinces where Songkran is elaborately celebrated right?
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
Let's take the analyses a bit further, let us look at Wiki and see the traffic related deaths in Thailand, not too much data there but is says 19.6 deaths per year, per 100.000 inhabitants. Grap calculator and wiki more: 66 million people in Thailand, so it is 19.6 divide by 100.000 multiply by 66.000.000 and then divide by 365 days a year should give us an average per day right??

So we see actually every day per average 35 people in Thailand die because of traffic related accidents………
Means there is hardly a difference between a normal day in say September or during Songkran, the problem is no seasonal but all year around the same!

Now how did Songkran come into the discussion on traffic related deaths in Thailand anyway? Maybe because of some other statistics:
Foreign tourists to spend B2.93bn over Songkran, according to Kasikorn Research Centre | Bangkok Post: news
 
Last edited:

Lone Rider

Blokes Who Can
Joined
Jan 29, 2011
Location
Chiangmai
Bikes
4 Wheels
555555, I think my old math teacher told me once that there are lies, damned lies and statistics so take your pick and you get what you want or need:LOL
 

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
Dead body found in Chiang Mai moat


CM108.com - translation
Found dead in the moat.
10.30 the dead bodies were found in the moat. Chiang Mai Gate. To be drunk since yesterday. Initially a male aged around 30 years.
Ask someone close to the market that is known to drink around here regularly. One policeman and a child.











 

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
[h=1]173 deaths, 1,526 injuries in 1st three of seven dangerous days during Songkran holiday, most deaths (5) recorded in Prachuap Khiri Khan[/h]


Story - MCOT news
 

KTMphil

Senior member
Joined
Jan 11, 2011
Location
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Bikes
2007 KTM 990 Adventure Suzuki DRZ 400
Songkran
[h=1]Two-day death toll exceeds last year's[/h]



[h=2]101 killed and 838 injured; drunk driving and speeding main cause of accidents[/h]


With 101 deaths, the cumulative road toll in the first two days of the Songkran holiday period remained higher than the same period last year, despite fewer road accidents, Road Safety Centre reported yesterday.

Apart from the 101 deaths, 838 people were also injured in 791 road accidents, according to the centre's record between Thursday and Friday, Deputy Permanent Secretary for Interior Panadda Diskul told a press conference.

Panadda said most accidents - about 39 per cent - were caused by drunk driving, followed by speeding 22 per cent. Therefore, authorities would strictly enforce the laws against drivers who drive under the influence of alcohol and over speed limits.

The first two days of last year's seven-day campaign to reduce road accidents during Songkran saw 88 deaths and 890 injuries in 824 accidents, he said.

Kanchanaburi and Prachuap Khiri Khan had the highest number of deaths - six each. Chiang Mai had the most injuries (34) and most accidents (32). No death was reported in 26 provinces.

On Friday alone, 465 accidents killed 62 and wounded 496.

He said as most of the revellers had already arrived in their respective provinces and begun celebrations there, the authorities would adjust their safety measures, looking at more secondary roads in the provinces between today and tomorrow. The centre also told the Metropolitan Police Bureau to strictly control drunk driving and speeding, especially at night-entertainment establishments because there was no traffic jam in the capital.

As many as 118,854 drivers have been arrested at checkpoints across the country for not having a valid licence and for failing to wear a helmet after police stopped 698,968 vehicles.

In an attempt to control alcohol consumption during Songkran, the Public Health Ministry has punished 57 vendors, according to Dr Saman Futrakul, director of the Disease Control Department's Office of Alcoholic Beverage and Tobacco Consumption Control Committee.

He said yesterday that the ministry had inspected 145 vendors in Nonthaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan and Lamphun and punished 57 of them for offering special promotions and discounts for alcoholic beverages, selling alcoholic beverages to juveniles aged under 20 and selling them during prohibited periods of the day and at prohibited places, such as petrol stations and pharmacies.

Saman said: "This was obviously against the laws."

Those who offered special promotions and discounts could face up to a Bt500,000 fine and/or a year's jail term. Vendors selling alcoholic beverages at prohibited places would be fined Bt10,000 and/or six months in jail; those selling them to youth under 20 would be fined Bt20,000 and/or jailed for a year and those selling during the prohibited periods would be fined Bt4,000 and/or jailed for two years.




Source : The Nation
 

2wheels

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Location
Chiang Mai
Bikes
Honda Rebel 500
Same, same every year.

" Between April 11 and April 16, there had been 2,581 road accidents which resulted in 285 road deaths and 2,783 injuries, the department statement said. It attributed 34% of the accidents to drunk driving.About 20% of the deaths and injuries during the six days of the holiday were the result of motorcyclists not wearing crash helmets.
The department said a total of 34,066 individuals had been charged for not wearing a helmet. "

(Bgk Post today)
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
The article says:
"The Road Safety Centre set up 2,354 checkpoints throughout the country, manning them with 69,369 officials during the Songkran holiday.
A total of 232,600 motorcyclists were charged with failing to wear a safety helmet and 222,601 motorists faced charges of driving without a licence.
During the seven-day period, the ministry found 474 violations of the alcohol act. He said 218 people were charged and the other 256 issued warnings."

In my opinion only 218 people charged for alcohol act violation is somewhat low compared to safety helmet violation??
Maybe because drunk car drivers offer better tea money then rural motorbike drivers?

Other statistics mention that annually 26.000 people in Thailand die in traffic related accidents, 26.000 / 365 is at average 71 people die?!?!
So these 7 "danger" days; 321 / 7 = 46 people died at average?
Means Thai statistics show it actually safer to drive during Songkran, or cut the BS and just call it 365 days of danger!
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
Each of the 69.369 officers each booked 3 people for not wearing a helmet.
It took 318 officers to book ONE drunk driver????
 

2wheels

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Location
Chiang Mai
Bikes
Honda Rebel 500
I'm sure that the Powers That Be have worked feverishly to make the Songran figures look as 'good' as possible, especially this year.
In other words, what we see are official statistics; no need to say any more.

Personally, I regard every day and every journey as dangerous!
 

brake034

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2013
Location
N/A
Bikes
Suzuki GD110HU, BMW F650GS
These powers did a great job, to reduce from 71 to 46 is absolutely a great achievement.
Let's change it around, declare the weeks of new year and songkran to be the safest weeks to travel in Thailand.

Then it is easy to declare the rest of the year as danger season and use the same resources currently used to track safety helmet criminals and give them tools to target and incentives to target drunk drivers:
For each drunk driver booked the officer will get a bonus, that way he is less dependable on the tea money.........
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
Thump General Discussion 25
J General Discussion 0
Top Bottom