Bus rear-ends truck, driver crushed, 34 passengers injured

The wrecked front of the Bangkok-Ubon Ratchathani bus that rear-ended a 10-wheel truck in Saraburi province late on Thursday night. The bus driver was killed and his body trapped in the wreckage, and 34 passengers hurt. (Photo from Sorbor Jeed Muangpriew Facebook page)

SARABURI: The driver of an interprovincial provincial bus was crushed to death and 34 passengers hurt when he drove into the back of a truck on the main highway in Muang district on Thursday night.

Two passengers were seriously injured.

The crash happened at kilometre marker 101-102 on Saraburi-bound Phahon Yothin Road in tambon Pak Khaosarn around 11.20pm.

The front of the Ubon Ratchathani-Bangkok bus, operated by Ubon Air Co, was torn open and caved in. 

Next to the wrecked bus was an overturned 10-wheel truck, and a damaged pickup truck was stopped on the road.

Bus driver Atthaphon Ekkapong, 38, of Ubon Ratchathani, was crushed to death, his body trapped in the wreckage. His head was missing, police said. 

Many passengers, adults and children, were hurt and crying for help when emergency units arrived on the scene. Rescue workers assisted them all from the bus wreckage and took them to Saraburi Hospital.   

Media reported that 34 passengers were injured, and two were in serious condition. 

Bus attendant Waithoon Rodchai, 40, told police there were 41 passengers. The bus left Mor Chit terminal at 9.30pm on Thursday, bound for Ubon Ratchathani. He was sleeping at the stairs next to the driver when the crash occurred and had no idea what happened. 

The truck driver, Khomsan Cherdchoo, 38, told police he was travelling in the left lane and the pickup truck was in the right lane before the crash. 

Suddenly, the bus travelling behind crashed violently into his truck, which overturned and rammed into the pickup truck. It was fortunate nobody in the pickup truck was hurt, Mr Khomsan said.

Pol Capt Saroj Ratwiroj, deputy investigation chief at Muang district, said it appeared the bus driver dozed off. There were no marks indicating he had applied the brakes.

Police would would question the passengers. The investigation was continuing, he said. 


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