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After a runway tour bus slammed into five vehicles and a motorbike killing two people and leaving twenty six others injured The Phuket Highways Office has secured 10 million baht to widen the road at the bottom of Patong Hill
This move has been made in a hope of preventing further fatal bus crashes caused by brake failure the news came after a closed door meeting on January 9th.
The fateful bus was carrying Russian and Thai tourist and only came to a stop after smashing into a concrete barrier and hitting a power pole at the front of Wat Suwankiriwong.
Phuket Highways Office Director Samak Luedwonghad said “We have drawn up a plan to expand the road from three to four lanes. This should help traffic flow and reduce the need for drivers to use their brakes so much, we already have the 10 million baht budget required. The construction plan has been submitted to the Ministry of Transport in Bangkok and is expected to be approved in March,” he added.
The project will see 500 meters of Phra Barami Road expanded to four lanes, starting in front of the abandoned Crest resort and ending at the junction in front of Patong Temple.
“The road expansion will take 150 days to complete. We will expand it while we install larger drains along the roadside so both projects can be finished at the same time,” Mr Samak explained. However, Mr Samak admitted that little more could be done to make the road safer.
“There is not enough room to reduce the incline of the descent into Patong. If you want to make driving into Patong safer, I recommend we build a tunnel through the hills as soon as possible,” he said. “Some people will be negatively affected by such a project, but it will help save lives,” Mr Samak noted.
Source – The Phuket Gazette