Search form

Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Road deaths to rise: minister

Road deaths to rise: minister

People inspect a vehicle after it crashed into a ditch in Preah Vihear province
People inspect a vehicle after it crashed into a ditch in Preah Vihear province this year. In the first 10 months of this year, traffic accidents in Cambodia have claimed the lives of more than 1,700 people. Heng Chivoan

Road deaths to rise: minister

Cambodia’s deadly traffic accidents are projected to rise this year.

Based on data collected up to the 10-month mark, government officials predict 2014’s traffic fatalities will outstrip the count for the previous two years.

From January to October, 1,772 people died on the road, and some of the deadliest months for accidents lie ahead, according to the Ministry of Public Works and Transportation.

Last year, a total of 4,353 accidents resulted in 1,950 deaths, and more than 5,000 serious injuries. In 2012, 1,966 people were killed in road crashes.

But 2014 has so far surpassed the previous daily average of five traffic fatalities per day.

“There is only a month and a half more. But the month of December [usually] has a high rate of people dying from traffic accidents, so I think the number … must be higher than last year,” said Minister of Public Works Tram Iv Tek.

“I estimated there will be between 2,000 and 2,100 people killed in 2014.”

Iv Tek recommended setting a goal for a 10 per cent per annum minimum decline in traffic accidents, but warned that with an increase of travellers on the roadways each month, the country’s fatalities would never drop to zero.

Every month, an estimated 20,000 new motorcyclists and 2,000 new car drivers pack onto the country’s roads. The increase of vehicles means an inflated chance of an accident, Iv Tek said.

About 50 per cent of traffic accidents are attributable to speeding, with another 13 per cent caused by alcohol and other reasons, the government figures show.

Of those killed, 70 per cent were moto drivers.

In Cambodia, about 1,200 families are affected every month by deadly accidents by losing a loved one, having to take time off work or taking on the expense of injuries and vehicle repairs, according to Kong Sovan, representative from the Global Road Safety Partnership.

“People who typically get into [fatal] accidents are between 15 and 44 years old; we lose the potential of [working-age] people to develop the country,” he said.


  • Breaking: PM says prominent human rights NGO ‘must close’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the Interior Ministry to investigate the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) and potentially close it “because they follow foreigners”, appearing to link the rights group to the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party's purported “revolution”. The CNRP - the

  • Rainsy and Sokha ‘would already be dead’: PM

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Sunday appeared to suggest he would have assassinated opposition leaders Sam Rainsy and Kem Sokha had he known they were promising to “organise a new government” in the aftermath of the disputed 2013 national elections. In a clip from his speech

  • Massive ceremony at Angkor Wat will show ‘Cambodia not in anarchy’: PM

    Government officials, thousands of monks and Prime Minister Hun Sen himself will hold a massive prayer ceremony at Angkor Wat in early December to highlight the Kingdom’s continuing “peace, independence and political stability”, a spectacle observers said was designed to disguise the deterioration of

  • PM tells workers CNRP is to blame for any sanctions

    In a speech to workers yesterday, Prime Minister Hun Sen pinned the blame for any damage inflicted on Cambodia’s garment industry by potential economic sanctions squarely on the opposition party. “You must remember clearly that if the purchase orders are reduced, it is all