Police today (Nov 1) also confirmed there was a tourist in the taxi at the time of the wipeout.
The airport taxi collided with five cars both parked and in motion, as well as fatally colliding with a motorbike, on Thepkrasattri Rd southbound in Srisoonthorn at 8am Tuesday. (See story here.)
The police officer in charge of the investigation, Capt Suporn Mueangkai of the Thalang Police, today confirmed that the taxi driver is 23-year-old Marut Puangsombat.
Capt Suporn also confirmed to The Phuket News today that the motorbike rider killed in the wipeout was Anuson Rattanadilok Na Phuket, 40, a Phuket resident.
Mr Anusorn worked at Thalang Hospital, Capt Suporn said, but did not identify which position he held.
“His body has been buried in a funeral ceremony already,” Capt Suporn said.
Capt Suporn explained that the only other person injured in the wipeout was Marut, the driver of the green-plate registered airport taxi.
“He had only minor wounds. After the incident, he didn’t run away, and he went to Mr Anuson’s funeral too,” he said.
“The other cars had no people inside so there no one else was injured,” Capt Suporn added.
“The reason for the accident was that Marut was driving very fast like other taxi drivers. He was not drunk at the time. He has been charged with reckless driving causing death and charged with reckless driving causing damage to property,” Capt Suporn confirmed.
Capt Supon noted that Marut underwent blood tests that showed him negative for alcohol and drugs.
However, Capt Suporn added, “When the accident happened, there was one foreign passenger in the taxi, but that foreigner was not injured.
“Immediately after the accident, the foreigner went straight back to the airport to go home,” he said.
Capt Suporn declined to name the tourist, or identify the tourist’s age or nationality.
Regarding whether Marut will have his commercial taxi driver’s licence revoked over the incident, Capt Suporn said, “Police have reported Marut’s case to the court, and the court will decide how what to do with this guy, whether to allow him (to keep his licence) or ban him. All that is up to the court.”
Of note, under a crackdown in 2016 metered taxi drivers were threatened by Navy security personnel that for not using their taxi meters or not having their metres configured correctly, the drivers faced a seven days licence suspension for a first first offence, and stood to have their licences revoked entirely for a second offence. (See story here.)