The incident took place at about 6pm when many residents were walking and riding their motorcycles across the 31-year-old bridge over the Pa Sak River in tambon Ta Larn.
Reports said five people, two men and three females including two young girls aged 10 and 14, have been confirmed dead.
It was believed the main cables that support the bridge deck snapped, causing the bridge to collapse in the middle and commuters to fall into the river. The bridge, which had recently been repaired, is 4 metres wide and 120 metres long.
The number of casualties is expected to rise as rescue crews are searching for more people who may have been trapped under the debris. Hundreds of people reportedly watched the carnage from both sides of the river’s banks.
Of the 45 injured who have been rushed to Tha Rua Hospital, two were in critical condition as they were hit by falling debris from the bridge.
The bridge was built in 1982 to commemorate the 120th anniversary of the founding of the Rattanokosin era. The accident occurred after the bridge had undergone restoration work last year. The collapse has isolated residents at Moo 6 village from tambon Ta Larn.
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