The Water Festival did not pass without tragedy this year, as 18 people were reported to have been killed and 55 injured in traffic accidents over the three-day period, government statistics show.
According to Him Yan, director of the Ministry of Interior’s department of public order, the deaths occurred mostly on country roads.
Yan said the number of serious injuries fell slightly, though the number of deaths stayed the same.
Explaining the fewer crashes, Yan credited the figure to the “careful driving” of residents in cities and towns.
Though the festival was officially cancelled this year in the wake of King Father Norodom Sihanouk’s death, many Cambodians had three days off work, and thus informal gatherings were held all over the country, Yan said.
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