Travel Tips : Danger, the first rain after months of no rain

Motorbike riding in Thailand
A rainy day in North-East Thailand

Jan 2013 After driving for about 8 years in Thailand with a total of about 240.000km it did happen yesterday at the first rain since a few months. I was driving my car from Khon Kaen to Sakhon Nakhon and was just passing Sawang Deang Din when it started to rain. First a little bit and then more & more. Of course I slowed down. And of course I had heard the warnings "With the first rain after months of no rain the roads will turn into ice skating tracks".

This as there is actually a lot of oil and other slippery material IN the road due to oil leaking from cars & trucks. And due to the soft compound of tyres. And when it starts raining after a few months of no rain, all this oil will float to the surface of the road. Actually you can even see it, the white kind of foam that you see on the road with rain. And although the rain had stopped the road was still wet. And I had been driving over a wet & oily road for about 15 km. So probably my tires did became slippery of an oil film on the tyres? But well that is something I think of now, more as 24h later.

I do not know what triggered the event but suddenly I lost control of the car and the car was moving to the wrong side of the road. While I tried to manoeuvrings the car back to the left lane, I saw cars coming to me. Well I did manage to get to the left lane, probably while twirling on the road. And then I slipped of the side of the road. Thank to Buddha (or whoever) for having a strong car, that I was wearing a seat-belt and that I did not hit or hurt other people or cars. I was not injured or hurt (although now I have a bit stiff neck & shoulders) but the car is a bit a damaged. But think of it .... all cars at the moment of the accident just followed their way. I was lucky that I was not injured and could just walk to get some help.

Although nobody stopped, there was an teacher of a nearby school who saw it all happening and he came directly to check. And he called police and my insurance company. And he did stay with me until the insurance guy was there. He did even order someone to buy food & drink for me and himself. All people that I did meet during this ordeal were polite and kind.

First question "Your drunk?" and "Your sleeping?" ... the 2 most common reasons of accidents in Thailand. No ... but indeed now after the rain and all dry it is hard to understand why I would drive into a 3m deep trench. But I was not the only one ..... within a stretch of 4 km there were 3 accidents.

It all goes slow but an report for the insurance was made, tow car was called, police report was made and car was brought back to Khon Kaen for repair. A friend living nearby brought us back to Udon Thani from where we took an mini-van to Khon Kaen. And now .... no car and it is bloody well raining all day!

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