Thai man accidentally kills pregnant wife

A family outing turned tragic when a father-to-be accidentally drove into his pregnant wife after celebrating the Thai New Year at Buddhist temples, police said Friday.

The fatality occurred in addition to 343 motoring deaths reported in the first seven days of the Songkran water festival marking new year, according to road safety officials.

Drunk driving is the main cause of road accidents during Songkran, when people take 10 days off around the April 13-15 holiday to visit family and ring in the holiday with religious rites.

In Prathumthani province, just north of Bangkok, Pattanaphong Khwanchareonchang and his wife spent Thursday visiting nine Buddhist temples. The holiday is considered a time for cleansing and renewal, and at temples children pour perfumed water over their elders' hands as a sign of respect.

The couple returned home, where Pattanaphong washed the car before parking it in their garage. As he backed in, he plowed into his wife, killing her and their unborn child, said police Col. Chatchai Lamsaeng.

Pattanaphong, who had not consumed any alcohol, was charged with reckless driving and causing a person's death, carrying a maximum penalty of 10 years behind bars.

For the first seven days of the holiday through Thursday, 343 people died and another 4,199 suffered injuries on Thai roads, the Road Safety Center said.

Last year, a total of 522 people died and 16,395 were injured during the 10-day holiday period, reports the AP.

I.L.

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Author`s name: Editorial Team