Pai Bridge

The Pai River bridge is often cited as the most visible evidence of the presence of Japan's Army in Northern Thailand during WWII.
But the bridge was actually built after the war. This website attempts to correct both that misconception and others about the period.


Japan in Northwest Thailand during World War II

N19°17.845 E98°27.884 Tha Pai Bridge (Th: สะพานท่าผา / Jp: ターパイー橋 )[1]
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Route 1095
Station 088


Text Notes


Tha Pai Bridge location


As noted in the banner at the top of the page, the bridge over the River Pai is often, but erroneously, presented as built by the Imperial Japanese Army (I J A) during WWII.

Preliminary information by the author about the Tha Pai Bridge[2] is currently available at The Pai Bridge.

The photo below is taken from a detailed examination of the Pai bridge which will be included here at a future time: in the photo is the name of one of the steel manufacturers for the Bailey Bridge which forms the northerly-most span of the Pai bridge. It is presented at this time to complete a reference from the San Khayom bridge, which has steel from the same manufacturer:[3]

Appleby-Frodingham moniker

Structural steel manufacturer: "Appleby-Frodingham".






Revision List
2012 May 15
First published on Internet
2014 Feb 10
Appleby-Frodingham photo added




See Key for interpreting page content.

Revision list. See bottom of Text column on this page.

Bibliography supports notes.

1.^ Other names include "the Bridge over the River Pai", "The World War 2 Memorial Bridge", "The Old Iron Bridge at Pai", etc.

ท่าผา, ie, Tha Pai, (both per RTSD map 4647 I) is the name of the village at the southeast end of the bridge .

2.^ Map is extracted from
Scale 1:1,600,000
(กรุงเทพมหานคร:กรมทางหลวง, 2009) [Road Map of Thailand, Scale 1:1,600,000 (Bangkok: Department of Public Highways, 2009)] (foldout map). Annotations are by author. Routes used by retreating IJA forces are here assumed to approximate currently existing roads.



3.^ Extract from CIMG2482 of 11 Feb 2008; photo has been enhanced to improve legibility of manufacturer's name.