A witness has accused the driver of a bus operated by Rith Mony Transport Co Ltd of endangering the lives of students crossing the road in Kampong Thom province’s Stoung district.
The witness said that if such drivers are allowed to continue driving public transport, the lives of pedestrians and “anyone who crosses their path” are in serious risk of injury or death.
In an email sent to The Post on Saturday, the man said he was driving his car from Siem Reap province to Phnom Penh when the bus overtook him.
“I have just witnessed a very dangerous bus driver speeding past a school at 11am while the road was full of students. The bus was travelling at more than 65km/h (around 40mph)."
“If this sort of driver is not taken off driving public transport, I fear for the safety of pedestrians and other road users that may cross their path. I sincerely hope that the relevant authorities will take action against this company and its driver,” the email read.
The passenger provided photographs of the bus in question, including its number plate.
A Rith Mony supervisor, who gave only his first name, Chy, told The Post that if the driver had been exceeding the speed limit, he would call and educate him, but he had not yet checked the case.
“I will call him to give instructions first. If he has been instructed and there is another problem the next day, perhaps then I can suspend or fire him,” Chy said.
Provincial hall spokesman Yov Sengkun told The Post that his administration collaborates with provincial police headquarters to carry out checks and intercept drivers breaking the speed limit on national roads, but the authorities sometimes rotate the areas they patrol.
“If drivers exceed the speed limit, traffic police will instruct them to drive slower. If a driver has already been educated and commits the offence again, he will be held accountable under the law,” Sengkun said.
Phnom Penh Municipal Hall spokesman Met Meas Pheakdey told The Post that all bus companies and the public, not just Rith Mony, had to fully respect the Road Traffic Law.
“Thank you for providing the information. I will pass it on to local [authorities] in order for them to relay it to the company so they can pay further attention to the driver,” he said.
Article 17 of the Road Traffic Law, published in 2014, states: “In all cases, drivers shall always be in control of their own speed and drive at an appropriate speed according to the actual situation, so that they are able to stop their vehicles in time, if required, without any harm caused.”
It specifies 12 situations in which drivers are required to reduce their speed. Among them are “when passing schools or hospitals that are located less than 50m from the road”.
According to a 2015 sub-decree, the speed limit for all vehicles in built-up areas is 40km/h.