A tragic road accident unfolded in the old town of Mueang Chiang Mai, Thailand, in the early hours of yesterday, involving a Ghanaian tourist and a team of construction workers. The unfortunate incident occurred at 3.55am when a sedan, driven by a tourist from Ghana, crashed into a construction site, resulting in one fatality and two injuries.
The victim of the fatal crash was a 26 year old Lao construction worker named Thao Khantalay, who was working on an underground cable project along the canal in the old town. Two of his colleagues, 28 year old Donnapha, and 22 year old Trairat, also suffered injuries in the collision but are said to be in a stable condition.
The driver of the sedan, identified as Wisdom Okyere, a 26 year old Ghanaian tourist, was immediately apprehended by the Mueang Chiang Mai police for questioning. An alcohol test was conducted on Wisdom, which revealed an alcohol content of 121mg%, well above the legal limit. Consequently, Okyere was detained for further legal action, reported The Pattaya News.
In a statement to the police, Okyere explained that he had been in Chiang Mai for a fortnight and had rented the sedan for transportation purposes. He confessed to having consumed alcohol at pubs around the old town with friends before the accident occurred. While returning to his hotel, he crashed into the construction site, resulting in the grievous accident.
The Chiang Mai Police Chief, Police Colonel Pratchaya Tisala, addressed the incident in a public statement. He suggested that the accident might not have a direct correlation with the recent policy change extending entertainment service hours to 4am. He pointed out that the old town has numerous construction sites operating at night, and tourists, particularly those from abroad like Wisdom, might not be familiar with the routes and hazards.
While acknowledging that Wisdom was driving under the influence of alcohol at the time of the accident, Pol. Col. Pratchaya announced that the Chiang Mai Municipality and the involved contractors would meet to discuss enhancing safety measures at construction sites. This could include improving street lighting and adding more cones and barriers in construction areas, to prevent such incidents from happening in the future.