Thai bus crash pair too sick to come home

PUBLISHED : Monday, 17 April, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 17 April, 2006, 12:00am

Two passengers seriously injured in the tour bus accident in Thailand must remain in hospital in Bangkok possibly for another week.

The accident, in which 30 Hong Kong tourists were injured, happened on Friday afternoon when their tour bus flipped over on its way from Pattaya to Bangkok.

Susanna Lau Mei-sze, general manager of the tour organiser, Hong Thai Travel Services, said the two seriously injured travellers, a 38-year-old tour guide from Hong Kong and a 77-year-old woman, were in Bangkok Hospital's intensive care unit.

The tour guide, who specialises in leading Southeast Asia tours, has punctured lungs, while the elderly woman has spinal injuries.

'[The tour guide] is in serious condition but he's conscious,' said Ms Lau, adding that he was not able to be moved because to do so could risk further damaging his lungs. 'Our staff in Bangkok is looking after him,' she said.

The elderly woman, said Ms Lau, was also not able to travel. She said the woman's son, who was also among the tour group, remained in Thailand to look after her.

'Doctors said they might have to stay for another week. The woman's medical expenses will be covered by the insurance company,' Ms Lau said.

Bangkok Hospital said air travel was not recommended for the pair.

Ten tourists, including three formerly admitted to hospital, and their relatives, returned home last night.

One of the tour group's members, Mrs Wong, who broke bones in her hand, said the injured had remained in Pattaya for too long before they were transferred to Bangkok Hospital. 'It would have been better if we were transferred earlier,' she said.

Ms Lau said they were suffering from broken bones and were encouraged to visit the doctor again after they had returned to Hong Kong.

Seventeen of the group returned home on Saturday night. Three, including two in stable condition and one under observation, were in Princess Margaret Hospital.

The tour organiser said a decision on whether to offer the travellers compensation would be made only after an investigation on the cause of the accident.

In January, 14 Hong Kong tourists died and 29 were injured when their tour bus crashed near the Egyptian resort of Hurghada.


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