Proposed 4 a.m. curfew protested by victims of drunk drivers


place of entertainment and night life operators are pushing fervently for a 4am closing time and won the support of many key government officials. But a protest outside Government House was rebuffed against a later curfew, fueled by victims of drunk drivers and a coalition of anti-drunk driving activists.

The extension of the curfew to 4 a.m. is expected to be formally proposed to Cabinet for approval at its weekly meeting on November 15. Famous nightlife spots like Patong in Phuket, Khao San Road in Bangkok, Ao Nang in Krabi and Koh Lak in Phang Nga topped the list of areas that would be considered for expansion, according to The Phuket News.

Tourism and Sports Minister Pipat Ratchakitprakarn has been a strong supporter of the subsequent curfew, seeing it as a boost for Thailand’s economy, especially after his visit to the bustling and drunk Full Moon Party in August . The measure also won the support of Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt, who recently expressed his approval for a later curfew in the capital’s main nightlife areas.

But the Quality of Life Network gathered around 60 protesters yesterday to demand the rejection of the proposal. They believe that longer nightlife will lead to a sharp increase in road accidents and alcohol-related deaths. The head of the Network of People Affected by Alcohol in Bangkok is in a wheelchair due to a drunk driver and has come out strongly against extending the curfew.

“We don’t have enough injured, disabled or dead today when nightclubs close at 2am. Adding two more hours might not be long. But how many people would die, be injured or become disabled in a year because of it? »

Thailand spends about 90 billion baht a year on damage caused by drink-driving and more than 20% of all alcohol-related crashes, according to the Thai Health Promotion Foundation and other similar non-governmental groups. A volunteer rescue worker at yesterday’s protest said more than half of nighttime crashes in Bangkok involve drunk drivers.

Activists have pushed the Minister of Tourism as well as Deputy Prime Minister Anutin Charnvirakul, whose Bhumjaithai party supports extending the curfew after being an influential factor behind the legalization of cannabis. They implore powerful government officials to think about how many people will die, as people have two more hours to down cocktails before getting behind the wheel for a late night drunken drive home.

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