Chinese Tourist Loses Arm in Sobering Reminder of Thai Road Safety

Photos: 单翼的花精灵 / Weibo
Photos: 单翼的花精灵 / Weibo

BANGKOK — Like many others, one Chinese tourist was looking to ring in the new year with a tropical respite. But as happens too often in these final weeks, her plans came to an abrupt end in a road accident that cost her an arm.

The Chinese woman recounted online in grisly detail the accident that befell her while traveling to Koh Chang on a family holiday in a Friday Weibo post picked up by Thai netizens.

“My fourth surgery is tomorrow,” she wrote in the original post.

According to Thai translators, the woman said she was on the way to the island when the driver “suddenly turned” and crashed into a tree. She was the only one injured.


Her account drew fresh attention both at home and abroad to Thailand’s treacherous roads at the beginning of one of their deadliest periods – the New Year’s holidays. The woman is followed by more than 127,000 people online, and her post drew many comments expressing both sympathy and shared anecdotes of Thai road scares.

“Whether the vehicle was operated by Chinese or Thai drivers, we all know that roads in some areas in Thailand are very dangerous, full of potholes and badly lit. In China, they’re very good at road maintenance. Roads in tourist cities have no holes, are well lit and have CCTVs,” wrote the admin of the Aizhong page, which posted the translated post.

Last year, 423 people died on Thai roads between Dec. 28 and Jan. 3, dubbed the year-end “seven dangerous days.”

Thai tourism has been trying to recover from its first decline in Chinese arrivals since the sinking of a ferry this past July.

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