Phuket deputy governor announces 5-year target to halve road deaths

Phuket Deputy Governor Anupap announced a 5-year target to reduce Phuket’s road death toll at a meeting yesterday. Anupap said the goal for 2027 is to have only 12 deaths per 100,000 people. That would mean 41 road deaths a year in Phuket. Last year, Phuket saw 70 road deaths. To meet the 2027 target, Phuket would need to nearly halve its current road fatality rate.

But is it possible? So far this year, with 2022 halfway through, Phuket has already recorded 42 road deaths. Anupap says changing current realities will take several steps. These include adding clearer traffic markings on the roads, more traffic warning signs and education campaigns.

Local municipalities now plan to hold driver awareness activities every month, Anupap said. The vice governor said these activities will teach drivers what they can lose from unruly driving and traffic violations. Once a month, municipalities will inform the Phuket Road Safety Committee of their efforts. Anupap said the other steps needed to achieve the goal are…

“Operations such as strict enforcement by responsible officers and the prosecution of offenders for breaking the law receive the maximum penalty so that drivers strictly follow the law.”

Anupap’s statement comes after Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha announced last month that the 2027 target for Thailand as a whole was to reduce road deaths by nearly 2-thirds. . Thailand has the ninth highest road fatality rate in the world, with 32.7 deaths per 100,000 people, according to the World Health Organization. As with Phuket, Thailand’s goal for 2027 is to reduce that number to 12 people per 100,000. The so-called “Vision Zero” goal for 2050, he said, is to completely eliminate deaths on the roads and serious injuries.

The question remains, how effective will education campaigns, tougher penalties and traffic warning signs be in getting drivers to slow down? After a notorious incident in January when a motorbike hit and killed an eye doctor at a zebra crossing in Bangkok, a study has revealed grim facts. Two organizations studied the number of cars, motorbikes and public vehicles that stop for pedestrians at 12 crosswalks in Bangkok. They found that in total, 89% would not stop.

The public will have to wait and see how much Anupap and Prayut can change road safety in Thailand.

THE SOURCE: Phuket News

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