Lt Col Chaleaw Taihu of the Phuket City Police was notified of an accident in the northbound lanes at the intersection (see map below) at 3pm.
Col Chaleaw together with Kusoldharm rescue workers arrived at the scene to find a Toyota Fortuner in the middle of the road. In front of the SUV was a Honda Click motorbike that had been rammed from behind. Lying beside it on the ground was another motorbike, a Honda Wave.
Police were told that a woman, Wareerat Na Kaew, 29, had been injured in the accident and had already been transferred to Mission Hospital.
Wareerat Wannamok, 30, a friend of Ms Wareerat, told police that she and Ms Wareerat were on the Honda Click motorbike heading from Phuket Town to Koh Kaew.
“We stopped at the traffic lights and the Honda Wave was beside us,’ she said.
The women noticed a Toyota Fortuner approaching them from behind at speed.
“The car hit us and our motorbike hit the Honda Wave, whose driver was Supansa Songwisit. We fell off the motorbike,” Ms Wareerat said.
The driver of the Fortuner, Melisa Maria Ueckermann, 44, told police, “I drive past this intersection every day. I did not realise that the traffic lights were in use, so I did not slow down.”
Local residents told The Phuket News that the traffic lights had been fitted at the intersection for weeks, but previously the lights blinked yellow. They were only switched on today.
However, the residents present at the scene today said no public announcement had been made to inform local people that the lights were no active.
“People who drive past here each day during their daily routines will not know that the lights have been switched on,” said one local resident.