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Chinese tourists injured as runaway Phuket tour bus crashes on Patong Hill

PHUKET: A runaway tour bus carrying Chinese tourists crashed at the bottom Patong Hill little before 9pm, plunging the area into darkness.

patong, Chinese, tourism, transport, accidents,

Eakkapop Thongtub

Monday 22 February 2016, 10:06PM

The Phuket News saw at least four ambulances dispatched to the scene.

Police have confirmed that at least 17 tourists* have been rushed to hospital for treatment of injuries, though no description of how serious the injuries were was given.

The bus stopped after slamming into a power pole in the sidestreet beside Patong temple. The concrete power pole was broken into two by the force of the impact.

All the streetlights along the northern side of Phra Baramee Rd were in darkness all the way to the Caltex petrol station in Kathu.

Bus driver 40-year-old Jeerasak Kimbuathong from Krabi** has been taken to hospital, rescue workers at the scene confirmed. He was later confirmed dead on arrival.

Ocean Marina Pattaya Boat Show 2016

Police reported that the bus, operated by Phuket Smile Travel, was returning the tourists to their hotel in Patong when the accident happened. The tourists were returning from a tour of the Similan Islands and had boarded the bus in Phang Nga.


* UPDATE: Initial reports noted only 10 rushed to hospital

** CORRECTION: Not Somphon Plotchaikwang, 41, as given by the police.



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Christy S. | 25 February 2016 - 07:50:45

Is this  a new ploy by Chinese officials to cull the population? Just send 'em to Phuket....

The Phuket News | 23 February 2016 - 02:28:18

To TAT and the Governor of Phuket.
Deaths by drowning, motor boat accidents, diving accidents, tourists assaults, boats sinking, drownings, fraud at ATMs, jet-skis and tuk-tuk scams, taxis refusing passengers and to go by metre and tour bus crashes are now getting beyond alarm for tour operators and travel agencies all over the world sending  Tourists to Thailand!
High time some serious Investigations are lodged. Seems every Tom, Dick and Harry are now tour operators in Phuket –legal or illegal, and are out to make as  many baht as quickly as they can , and under the radar if possible, BUT that does not even deter them, and irrespective of safety, ethical principles, or complying with safety standards and Thai laws. Never mind the exploitation going on. TAT stop coming to London ad ITB Berlin and all the other International Tourist Fairs with your glossy palm Island brochures and start pointing out and warning tourists instead of facts they will be facing. Thailand is killing the "Goose that lays the Golden Eggs"! You are losing market share to other Asean countries.  Maybe it is high time to wake up ALL involved, hotels as well, of the reality that MAYBE you are NOT the destination you used to be any longer.

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