Last updated: 10:37 PM ET, Sat September 26 2015

Thailand Tourist Boat Collision Kills 1, Injures 22

Impacting Travel | Michael Isenbek | September 26, 2015

Thailand Tourist Boat Collision Kills 1, Injures 22

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

Shutting off the lights might have been a bad idea.

A tourist boat traveling at night on Thailand’s Mae Klong River to view fireflies with, police believe, all onboard lights extinguished, was struck by another vessel, killing one and injuring 22, the Bangkok Post reported.

The crash occurred Friday less than half a mile from the Amphawa Floating Market, a tourist attraction in Thailand’s Samut Songkhram province, the Post said. The area is about 35 miles west of Bangkok.

Pol Maj Wattana Nuansridam, duty officer at Amphawa police station, received emergency notification regarding the collision. He told the Post that a 30-seat boat was carrying 23 tourists on a firefly-viewing excursion from the market when an empty passenger boat crashed into it in front of the Wat Bang Khae Yai temple.

Citing Thai media reports, the Post said all passengers — 21 South Korean and 2 Hungarian tourists — were thrown into the water, and kept afloat by life jackets.

Locals who witnessed the collision rushed to assist and alerted authorities. All 23 tourists were plucked from the water and all were hospitalized with injuries. Four were seriously injured and of them, a 61-year-old Hungarian woman with head injuries was pronounced dead a short time after the collision, the Post reported.

Police Lt. Col. Bhakin Sivamethakul told The Associated Press both boat drivers face a charge of “causing death through negligence,” which could mean up to 10 years in prison. The drivers also face a charge of “failure to navigate a vessel in the proper direction.”

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