Nine Cambodian workers returning home from Thailand died Friday in a car crash, the first major traffic disaster in the lead up to Khmer New Year.
“Nine Cambodians died in a car crash in Thailand,” said Chhoem Limhong, police chief of Battambang province’s Kamrieng district, on the Thai border. “They were on their way home for Khmer New Year.”
As of Friday evening, Cambodian authorities were still trying to identify the migrant workers who had died. According to AFP news agency, 14 Cambodians were traveling in a minivan in Thailand’s Chanthaburi province when the bus crashed against a tree. Nine people died at the scene.
Three were in critical condition in a Thai hospital. Last year, authorities reported that the number of traffic accidents during Khmer New Year dropped, but the number of deaths increased.
A total of 67 people died during the five days that were monitored, while 303 were injured. Speeding and drunk driving were the most common causes for traffic accidents during Khmer New Year.