City hall announced yesterday that all trucks transporting petrol and natural gas will be allowed to travel in the city only between the hours of 10pm and 5am, although it did not specify when the new regulation would take effect.
The city said the new rule was designed to avoid traffic jams and accidents involving gas-carrying vehicles.
“City Hall expects that the owners of trucks transporting gasoline and natural gas will cooperate with us to reduce accidents,” the statement said. On September 21, a truck carrying 8,000 litres of petrol exploded in Prampi Makara district, igniting nearby houses and destroying five cars.
Prak Sophea, 25, a driver for Mekong Petroleum, said he welcomed the intent of the announcement but was concerned that it might actually increase the frequency of accidents.
“It’s a good idea, but I’m worried about the time limit.... because it is the time when all people take a rest from work,” he said. “I want to keep the normal time I [drive] every day, from 7am to 5pm.”
Prak Sophea said it would be difficult for drivers to stay awake at night, perhaps increasing the frequency of accidents.
Heng Chantheary, chief of Phnom Penh traffic police, said he had not yet seen the announcement but would enforce it once he has received orders from City Hall.
“I don’t know whether we will fine them or stop and educate them, or just let them go, because I didn’t get the order yet,” he said.