Tuesday, 8.4.2008: In 2007, Traffic Accidents Killed 1,545 People; 4 People Die and More Than 70 Are Injured Every Day

Posted on 9 April 2008. Filed under: Uncategorized |

The Mirror, Vol. 12, No. 555

Special Event on Land Traffic Safety Held in Cambodia for Second Time

“The Week of Land Traffic Safety was held for the second time in the Olympic Stadium, under the presidency of Deputy Prime Minister Keo Puth Rasmey, the senior representative of Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia. Attending the event, was Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol, and the President of National Committee for Road Traffic Safety, Lieutenant General Uk Kimlek, the Deputy Commissioner of National Police and Vice-President of the National Committee for Road Traffic Safety, Mr. Chreang Sophan, a deputy municipal governor, Cambodia Country Director Mr. Bruno Leclercq of Handicap International Belgium, a representative of the Japan International Cooperation Agency [JICA], as well as many civil servants and students.

“The representative of JICA stated during the event that according to documents, in Phnom Penh there was a yearly increase of 10 % in the numbers of vehicle registrations from 2000 to 2007, and on the other hand, during that period, the rate of the traffic accidents increase was 7 %, and the number or deaths increased rapidly. The deaths increased by 200 in 2006 and by 261 in 2007.

“The president of Handicap International Belgium stated that the topic of this Week of Land Traffic Safety, held for the second time in Cambodia, was to cooperate to reduce traffic accidents through the respect of the traffic law. The traffic law is very important for the reduction of the traffic accidents. The Cambodian Land Traffic Law has been passed and is implemented since March 2007.

“On average, every day more than four people die and many more are injured in road accidents in Cambodia. Cambodia is the country which has the highest death rate from traffic accidents among the ASEAN countries. According to media reports about casualties and land traffic accidents, compiled in cooperation between the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Health, and Handicap International Belgium, they showed that in 2007, there were at least 27,403 traffic accidents, with 1,545 persons killed – and this number was bigger than in 2006. This showed that the number of traffic accidents continue to rise more than the numbers of vehicles and citizens is increasing.

“Vice-President of the National Committee for Road Traffic Safety Lieutenant General Uk Kimlek noted in his speech that in general, Cambodia continually develops, social security is more stable, and public safety is better guaranteed; the citizens are living peacefully, and the living standard of the citizens improves, leading to a quick increase of all kinds of vehicles in recent years, which resulted in a worrying increase in the number of traffic accidents, at a high rate compared to other ASEAN countries. However, this always occurs in developing countries. The accidents not only harm the victims, but also seriously affect the national economy, the poverty alleviation policy, and developments in all sectors.

“Mr. Chreang Sophan, Deputy Governor of the Phnom Penh Municipality, representing the Municipal Governor Kep Chuk Tema, stated that by 2007, Phnom Penh had 512,087 vehicles, out of which 138,809 were automobiles. In 2007, there were 801 accidents which harmed 1,610 victims, in which 261 persons died, 824 were badly injured, 525 were lightly injured; 966 motorcycles, 14 tricycles, 336 automobiles, and 18 other vehicles were damaged.

“Responding to these issues under the smart leadership of Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Phnom Penh Municipality will be implementing road constructions and road repair plans by paving roads in four districts by the end of 2008, and other plans will be implemented in three other districts in the suburbs.

“The deputy municipal governor also called on citizens who travel in the city to drive carefully, and firmly practice the measures passed in the land traffic law. Especially those who use motorcycles and bicycles must wear helmets.

“Mr. Sun Chanthol noted that traffic accidents are caused by three factors: human factors, vehicle related factors, and road related factors.

“Nowadays traffic accidents in Cambodia became the second worst destructive problem after AIDS, which results in many deaths, injuries, disabilities, and damage to both private and public property. For instance in 2007, the total number of traffic accidents increased to 9,449 cases, which killed 1,545 persons, slightly injured 17,665, and gravely injured 7,150; on average, about four people died per day, about 70 were injured, and this is a higher rate than in the previous years.’

“Traffic accident and death rates in Cambodia are higher than in other ASEAN countries, compared to the population density and the numbers of vehicles. According to the data collected every year, the traffic accident rate increased by 15%, while for vehicles the increase was 10%, all these increases raised the death rate to 18 for 10,000 vehicles in 2007. In other ASEAN countries, the highest death rate is only 10.77 for 10,000 vehicles, and in developed countries, the highest rate of death is just 1.9 for 10,000 vehicles.

“In 2003, the Asian Development Bank conducted a study and found that traffic accidents which killed – in 2003 – only 824 people, the national economy lost US$166 million, equal to 3% of the GDP. This does not yet include the social consequences: orphans, widows, disabled, and the people pushed into poverty, which could put the poverty alleviation plans of the Royal Government into danger.

“He also called on the international community, on donor countries, local private companies, and on development partners, to continue to provide support to the National Committee for Road Traffic Safety with funds, equipment, and technical advice, so that the National Committee for Road Traffic Safety can implement its 15-point land traffic safety action plan effectively. He appealed to all citizens, the users of vehicles and the users of roads countrywide, to respect and to strictly implement the measures stated in the Cambodian Land Traffic Law, some are as follows:

  1. All vehicles must have appropriate number plates as stated in the law.
  2. All drivers who drive vehicles with a cylinder capacity above 49 cubic centimeters must obtain driving licenses according to the types of the vehicle.
  3. When driving, the drivers must always be cautious.
  4. Drivers and passengers who sit in the front seats of vehicles must wear safety seat belts.
  5. The drivers who drive motorcycles, tricycles and motorcycles with trailers/’Remorque’ must wear safety helmets.
  6. The drivers must not drive beyond the speed limits as stated in the law.
  7. It is not allowed to overloaded vehicles with passengers or goods, as stated in the law.
  8. Drivers are prohibited from drinking alcohol with an alcohol rate of more than 0,25 mg per liter of blood alcohol.

“He also appealed, especially to all motorcycle drivers, to registers for free of charge traffic law and motorcycle driving lessons at NCX [phonetic – not clear] from now on in Phnom Penh.” Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6317, 8.4.2008

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Areyathor, Vol.14, #1322, 8-9.4.2008

  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Accuses Cambodian People’s Party of Having Underground Money-Printing House [he said so during the demonstration against inflation on 6 April]

Chakraval, Vol.16, #2769, 8.4.2008

  • Demonstration Led by Mr. Sam Rainsy Is a Measure for the Number of Votes in the 2008 Elections [there were about 500 demonstrators only, while the expected number was 5,000]

Chuoy Khmer, Vol.2, #80, 8.4.2008

  • [Two] Bombs Planted in an Attempt to Kill [ADHOC] Human Rights Activist [Sin Samon] in Tuek Phos District [on the morning of 5 April – Kompong Chhnang]
  • [US based] National Democratic Institute Calls for Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Participation in Politics before the Elections

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.7, #1613, 8.4.2008

  • [Human Rights Party President] Kem Sokha Envious of Sam Rainsy’s Demonstration [accusing the government of discriminating among different political parties, allowing Sam Rainsy Party to hold a demonstration while the Human Rights Party was not permitted]
  • Sam Rainsy Party and Human Rights Party Disappointed with the Government over Demonstration [because the authorities prevented citizens from attending the demonstration, as the presence of many security forces frightened the citizens]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.2, #132, 8.4.2008

  • Municipal Authorities Deployed Forces to Threaten Sam Rainsy Party Activists and to Scare Citizens from Attending the Demonstration

Koh Santepheap, Vol.41, #6317, 8.4.2008

  • In 2007, Traffic Accidents Killed 1,545 People; 4 People Die and More Than 70 Are Injured Every Day
  • Measures for New Year’s Day: Phnom Penh Municipal Authorities Take Action against the Games of Throwing Powder and Splashing Water at Each Other [perpetrators are threatened with being arrested]

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.15, #3433, 8.4.2008

  • Mr. Sam Rainsy Urges the Government to Allow Farmers to Sell Rice Abroad
  • Cambodia Needs More Than US$3 Billion for Construction of [six] Hydroelectric Plants [by 2016]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.16, #4561, 8.4.2008

  • There Are About 1,000 Ships Registered in the International Ship Registry of Cambodia List but Cambodia Has No Sailors [Internet contacts available in English and in Korean!]
  • Guangxi Province Publicizes [the improvement of Guangxi province] through Cambodian International Television [TVK]
  • Crisis of Increasing Price of Rice Occurs All over Asia
  • China [through Cambodian Union Biotech company – sic] Builds Potato Processing Factory in Memut [Kompong Cham]

Samleng Yuvachun Khmer, Vol.15, #3286, 8.4.2008

  • Sam Rainsy’s Tiny Demonstration with 300 Demonstrators Shows that [garments factory] Workers and Teachers No Longer Support the No Longer Opposing Party
  • Norodom Ranariddh Party Criticizes [the government] for Not Taking Action against the Corruption of [Telecom Cambodia director] Nhek Kosal Vithyea

Have a look at last week’s editorial: How global problems cannot be solved on a national level
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