Initial inspection finds fatal bus does not meet safety standards

The bus that crashed in Nakhon Ratchasima’s Wang Nam Khiao district on Wednesday night (March 21) was old and not in good condition, according to experts from the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) and the Department of Land Transport.

AIT experts joined forensic police and transport officials of the Department of Land Transport to investigate the cause of the fatal bus crash to find out if it was the bus or human error.

The bus’s height was above the safety 4-metre high limit, they said.

After the inspection of the wrecks of the bus, AIT expert Ms Aue-aree Jensupakarn said she was investigating if road conditions are safe enough and whether the driver is travelling at proper speed and familiar with the route.

Land transport officials from the Bureau of Automotive Engineering said clarification was needed if the crash was really caused by brake failure as claimed by the driver.

They said they were looking into the braking system if it really malfunctions or it is normal.

They said if the brake was overheating, it would not be working, and it would be impossible to stop the vehicle.

Besides, they said driving on this road requires familiarity and skills on using transmission to help slow down the vehicle.

Since 2016, the Department of Land Transport has issued regulations limiting the height of each newly registered double-decker bus at no more than 4 meters.

The move is aimed at maximizing road safety.

The crashed bus, however, is old and fails to meet the department’s safety standards.

On Wednesday evening, the double-decker bus carrying passengers home from a trip to a beach in Chanthaburi ran off the Ratchasima-Kabin Buri road in Tambon Udomsap of Nakhon Ratchasima, killing 18 people and injuring more than 30 people.

Source: Thai Public Broadcasting Service (ThaiPBS)