China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC), the company behind the construction of the Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway, issued a warning on August 28, advising heightened vigilance for motorists during the rainy season due to increased weather-related accidents.

Key guidelines highlighted in the company’s advisory include reducing speed, maintaining safe distances and turning on lights while driving on the expressway.

Drivers are also urged to adopt safety measures during travel such as thorough vehicle checks before departure (including tires, signal lights, engine water levels, engine oil, and brakes), along with carrying a triangular reflector and fire extinguisher for every journey.

In low visibility situations caused by heavy downpours, fog or debris, the company emphasises the importance of using signal lights while decreasing speed or changing lanes.

“We consistently remind people at our toll-booths to exercise extra caution, prioritising safety in our collective journey,” it said.

Electronic billboards along the expressway provide real-time updates on meteorological and road conditions. The company advises drivers to pull over to the right and onto the emergency lane in case of any issues.

For passenger safety, the firm mandates exiting vehicles and standing outside safety barriers while promptly alerting authorities through the emergency number 1399. Standing or walking on the expressway is strictly prohibited.

Commenting on the announcement, Kim Panga, country director of the Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation, appreciated efforts to educate the public on this matter. However, he urged the company to enhance law enforcement in high-risk zones.

“Beyond reminders, stricter enforcement is vital as speeding remains a prime cause of collisions. I also advocate for increased surveillance cameras in high-risk areas,” Panga said.

He further implored all road users to exercise prudence, acknowledging that speeding, overtaking, and mobile phone usage contribute significantly to traffic incidents. These factors demand continuous education and awareness campaigns.

Recent data from the weekly traffic report (August 14-20) of the Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway Company, which operates the expressway, revealed that 87,567 vehicles used the expressway during that period, with three accidents recorded.

According to the Ministry of Interior, in the first six months of this year, 1,548 traffic accidents left 756 people dead and 2,072 injured.