BANGKOK (Reuters) - Three Chinese tourists died and 15 others were injured after a tour bus crashed in southern Thailand, police said on Wednesday.
Chinese tourists are the biggest visitors to Thailand. More than 560,000 arrived in January, accounting for over 20 percent of tourist arrivals, according to Thailand’s tourism ministry.
The bus was carrying 18 Chinese tourists from a hotel in the southern Thai tourist island of Phuket to a pier designated for the party island of Pha Nga, Police Lieutenant Chollada Chokdeesrijun, the officer in charge of the case, told Reuters.
The driver lost control at on a curve, Chollada said, adding that no other vehicles were involved in the accident.
Survivors are being treated at hospitals in Phuket. The bus driver, who sustained minor injuries, is being held at a local police station, said Chollada.
Thailand has one of the highest road accident death rates in the world, according to the country’s public health ministry, with reckless and drunk driving among the top reasons for road accidents.
Reporting By Kaweewit Kaewjinda; Editing by Amy Sawitta Lefevre and Michael Perry