Friday, December 06, 2019

Coach carrying Taiwan tourists engulfed in flames on expressway

May 19. 2018
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By The Nation

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A coach with about 30 Taiwanese tourists caught fire on a Bangkok expressway, sending them running for their lives on Saturday afternoon.

The fire broke out at about 1pm after the air-conditioned bus was about 200 metres beyond the Sukhumvit 62 expressway gate.

The entire bus was engulfed by the flames, shocking tourists who lost their bags in the bus compartment.

With a section of the expressway gate closed so firefighters and fire engines could battle the blaze, vehicles piled up for the over two kilometres to the Bang Na gate. The traffic travelling in the other direction was also slowed, causing congestion to the Tha Rua exit.

The bus driver, Pirapong Romphakdee, 43, said he had picked up the Taiwanese tourists from the NY Hotel in Samut Prakan’s Bang Saothong district to take them to shop at the Chatuchak weekend market.

After he has passed the Sukhumvit 62 gate by about 200 metres, the tourists yelled that they smelled fire, so he stopped and checked and found that a fire had started in the bag compartment.

Pirapong told the tour guide to tell the tourists to flee and the fire quickly engulfed the bus. Several tourists wept to see their belongings go up in flames, the bus driver recounted.

He said the tour company sent another bus to pick up the tourists.

Police have yet to determine the cause of the fire.

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