French woman biking in Ayutthaya dies after being hit by sedan


TWO women tourists, one French and the other American, were hit by a sedan while riding their bicycles across an intersection in Ayutthaya city last night (May 25) with the former dying in the hospital while the latter survived her injuries and the accident blamed on a confusion over the traffic light signals, Matichon newspaper said today.

Pol. Capt. Wirunkit Tantrakul, a deputy inspector at Ayutthaya police station, rushed to the Rojana road intersection where the accident took place at around 9 p.m. last night together with a team from Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya Hospital and volunteers from of Ayutthaya Ruamjai Association.

At the scene they found the severely injured French woman, later identified as Ms. Camellia Jean Gawaden, 26, (name translated as written in Thai) with her limbs broken and blood gushing out. She was rushed to the hospital and doctors tried to save her life but unfortunately she later died.

The injured American woman, Ms. Tara Nico Scouri, 34, said she met Ms. Gawaden in Bangkok and was persuaded to visit Ayutthaya with her. They had rented a room in a guesthouse and were returning there after visiting ancient sites and temples and having dinner.

When they reached this intersection they saw that the light was red and biked across but got hit by the sedan.

The driver of the sedan, Mr. Satana Khumsupha, 42, was standing near the site of the accident in a state of shock.

He told police that he was driving home after work and stopped at this intersection when the lights turned red, when the lights turned green he drove straight ahead and suddenly these two women biked through and he hit them because he was unable to brake in time.

 Mr. Chaiyaphon Wongchit, 51, the owner of the guesthouse, said the foreign tourists had got confused with the Thai traffic light system. In this instance the lights had turned red to stop vehicles from turning right but green for the traffic to flow straight ahead.

“Foreigners are unfamiliar with traffic lights here, they saw the red light and rode across. There should be an improvement or a clear light for pedestrians to cross the street so that people don’t risk their lives like this.

“The two tourists planned to go to Chiang Mai tomorrow but now one of them is dead,” he said.


The scene of last night’s accident where a French woman was killed and an American woman injured. Photos courtesy of TV Channel 3’s Thiang Wan Than Hedkarn programme and published by Naewna and Matichon newspapers

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