Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Grim start to 2022 with high road casualty numbers

Grim start to 2022 with high road casualty numbers

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Three were injured in a road accident in Kratie province on January 17. NATIONAL POLICE

Grim start to 2022 with high road casualty numbers

At least 101 people were killed and 237 others injured in 185 road accidents from January 1 to 17, according to National Road Safety Committee (NRSC) secretary-general Min Meanvy.

Meanvy, who also serves as secretary of state for the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, told The Post on January 17 that the frequency of traffic accidents in Cambodia over the first 17 days of the year is “extremely worrying”.

She added that of the 101 deaths in the first 17 days of the year, 81 were motorcyclists and 49 of them were not wearing helmets.

“On behalf of the NRSC, I would like to appeal to all road users and urge them to be careful and comply with the traffic safety standards set out in the traffic law such as not driving over the speed limit and not drinking alcohol. If you are driving, please respect the right of way and do not turn or pass in risky places. Always keep to the right, respect the traffic lanes and please wear helmets when riding a motorcycle,” she said.

Kim Pagna, director of the Asia Injury Prevention Foundation, said on January 17 that he had not yet been able to review the reports of traffic accidents that occurred by mid-January of this year, but overall he noted that the number of casualties in the daily report was high, especially for this year’s New Year holiday.

He added that in order to change the attitudes of people and get them to obey the traffic law two measures were needed. The first was to educate people and to integrate this driver’s education into schools from primary school through high school and the second measure was increased law enforcement activity.

He said that in the past his organisation had educated a lot of people in the target group, but civil society organisations had also asked law enforcement authorities to prioritize the implementation of the traffic law, because when the authorities enforce the traffic law the number of fatalities and injuries decreases significantly.

“As it is now – close to the traditional Chinese New Year, which will arrive at the end of January – we ask the authorities to enforce the law even during that period and we ask the people not to view the implementation of the law as being for the personal benefit of the authorities but in order to prevent traffic accidents from occurring,” he said.

Meanvy said that law enforcement has not been relaxed recently and despite the government’s efforts to tighten enforcement and educate drivers, traffic accidents continued to occur.

According to Meanvy, obeying the traffic law is about valuing one’s own life, family and the other people who share the road in order to live in harmony and participate in maintaining peace and development.

“Please join us in improving road safety at all times and in all places and participate in the Telegram channel ‘Our Traffic Safety’ with a constructive spirit of national unity,” she said.

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