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Phuket officials hold road safety meeting as island records increased deaths

PHOTO: Naewna

Phuket has recorded a shocking 64 deaths in 4 months on the island’s roads, with the statistic prompting officials to hold a road safety meeting. The Phuket Express reports that the figure is a 45% increase on last year’s list of fatalities.

Of course the number of visitors to Phuket has increased dramatically this year as well.

This week, the island’s Vice Governor, Arnuparp Rodkhwan Yodrabam, chaired a meeting aimed at tackling the problem. According to Arnuparp, there is a disturbing upward trend, year on year, in the number of people killed on Phuket’s roads. The yearly average is 135, which equates to around 11 deaths a month.

“From January to April this year, there were 64 deaths. When compared to the same period last year, the number has increased by 45%. The number is expected to reach 200 deaths this year if it continues at this pace.”

Meanwhile, the vice governor appears to ignore, the number of visitors, comparing the two periods, has increased 3-fold.

Arnuparp went on to explain that most deaths in road traffic accidents on Phuket involve motorbikes, with drivers and passengers not wearing helmets. He says some accidents have involved foreigners on rented motorbikes. The national average for road deaths is 75% motorcycle incidents.

“We are trying to urge road users to wear crash helmets and seat belts, not to exceed the speed limits, not to drink and drive, and slow down or stop for pedestrians on cross walks in order to decrease road accidents and road deaths.”

SOURCE: The Phuket Express

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