In an effort to combat the growing number of factory workers being hurt and killed during their commutes, the government is rolling out a plan to educate and license factory drivers, and producing videos teaching workers how to administer first aid should they find themselves in an accident.
In 2014, the government’s road safety working group – a joint effort between the ministries of Labour and Public Works and Transport – found that 50 per cent of truck drivers who ferry workers to and from work were unlicensed, said Preap Chanvibol, director of land transportation at the Transport Ministry.
“This year, we'll teach drivers [about the traffic law] so that they can take the driving exam,” he said yesterday. “Previously, we only disseminated the law, but now we are preparing plans to teach them about laws, signs, traffic lights and so on, so that they can take the driving exam.”
Long-term plans include phasing out open-bed trucks, often overloaded with standing room only passengers, as a means of worker transport altogether, Chanvibol added.
Accidents involving commuting workers resulted in 73 fatalities last year, and more than 4,700 injuries, according to the National Social Security Fund.
The promised first aid lessons for workers will come via radio and TV spots, said Penn Sakony, deputy road safety program manager at Handicap International.