ELDERLY BENZ DRIVER: An elderly woman who crashed into a disabled truck and sent two men plummeting their deaths has been charged with fatal reckless driving.
Surang Supornsuk, 72, was also charged Tuesday night with destroying government property after she plowed her Mercedes-Benz into a furniture delivery truck on the Si Rat Expressway near Wat Bua Kwan on Tuesday in northern metro Bangkok. Woothichai Suracha and Caris Waraklan, 32 and 22 respectively, died after falling from the elevated roadway.
“She seems confused about what happened. She said she doesn’t know how she hit the car,” police Col. Kittisak Tiangkamol said. “I suppose she may have fainted or was reaching for something in the car, because she didn’t brake at all.”
Surang did not make any public comment after reporting to the Rattanathibet Police Station. She paid an undisclosed amount of monetary compensation to victims’ families.
“She seemed very sorry and said she would pay for everything, including the funeral and not abandon my family,” said Thida Suracha, Woothichai’s widow. “She understands that we lost our main breadwinner and said that she should help me find a job as well.”
Kittisak said Surang did not seem to suffer from any impairment. On Tuesday, Woothichai and Caris, who made deliveries for SB Furniture, had stopped their truck on the left shoulder of the highway after it broke down and exited the vehicle.
Tongpan Kotila-ong, a manager at SB Furniture, said that both Caris and Woothichai had worked there nine years.
“Both of them were nice, hardworking and responsible. When they made mistakes, they improved themselves,” Tongpan said. “As soon as I heard the news, I was shocked,”
Tongpan said that he would help find jobs at SB Furniture for the families if they needed income.
The Expressway Authority of Thailand issued a statement Tuesday warning people to stay inside their vehicle and call the 1543 hotline for help if their car breaks down on the highway. Alternatively, it advised stranded motorists to use call boxes located every 500 meters to 1 kilometer before returning to one’s vehicle to wait.