THAILAND: Police crackdown on Chiang Mai road violators paying off, say public

ARRESTS RELATED to traffic violations are on the rise since Chiang Mai province implemented its “slow city” speed limit policy on March 1. And local people remain hopeful that their roads will become safer if the policy continues long term.

Pol Colonel Piyapan Pattarapongsin, superintendent of the Chiang Mai Traffic Police, said that though the policy covered the entire province, it would be particularly focused on Chiang Mai city.

He explained the policy – which set 10 municipality roads to carry a 40km/hour limit – was aimed to cut road accident fatalities by significantly lowering 10 main traffic offences. They were – riding motorcycles without a helmet; drunk driving; illegally modified vehicles; driving cars or motorcycles without a driver’s licence; failing to wear a seatbelt while driving; speeding; running a red light or violating traffic signs; suddenly cutting in front of other vehicles; driving/riding against the traffic; and using a cellphone while driving.

So far, a total of 125,906 traffic violators were arrested for 10 main traffic offences.

The most common charges were failure to wear a helmet – at 66,303 – and failing to show a driver’s licence, at 29,794.

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