About 4,000 officers to be deployed to ensure adherence to new traffic law with hefty fines for violators from May 1 in Cambodia

A traffic inspection is conducted along a Phnom Penh street. KT/Siv Channa. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

PHNOM PENH, Apr 29, 2020, The Khmer Times. About 4,000 police officers are due to be deployed across the country on Friday to ensure the new amendments of the traffic law is obeyed, with violators ordered to pay hefty fines, The Khmer Times reported.

National Police chief General Neth Savoeun said in a letter yesterday the traffic police officers throughout the country will enforce the road traffic law along with the sub-decree on hefty fines for violators from May 1 to increase the effectiveness in preventing and reducing traffic accidents.

“The traffic police officers across the country will implement the new law and sub-decree responsibly, transparently and equally without exception,” Gen Savoeun said.

He said all road users should abide by the traffic law to protect their lives, properties and others’.

Gen Savoeun also sent a letter on Monday to Interior Minister Sar Kheng, who is head of the National Road Safety Committee, saying to ensure the effectiveness of the road traffic law enforcement, 3,919 police officers, including 3,507 traffic police officers are ready to man 568 checkpoints, while 364 vehicles will be used in the operations.

He said locations to store impounded vehicles have already been chosen.

On March 17, the government issued a new sub-decree by adjusting the Traffic Law on punishments and fines for traffic violators in a move to help minimise traffic accidents.

The amendments included some articles which increase the severity of punishments with fines raised from three to five times their current amounts.

The new sub-decree stipulates fines be increased from about $15 to about $1,000 for traffic law violators, including motorcyclists without safety helmets, disobeying traffic lights, using mobile phones while driving and driving under the influence of alcohol.

Major General Chev Hak, Phnom Penh Municipal deputy police chief, said in a press conference yesterday the law enforcement will be made both day and night.

He said traffic violators will not be ordered to pay fines at the checkpoints, but they have to pay it at the municipal, provincial and district police stations where their vehicles will be impounded for three days.

“The sub-decree states for any violator who can not afford to pay a fine within three days, their vehicles will be kept there. Officers will continue to impound their vehicles up to 30 days,” Maj Gen Hak said, adding after 60 days, officers will send the case to court for further action.

For the first three months of this year, 493 people died due to traffic accidents across the country, including 81 people in Phnom Penh – the highest death toll among provinces according to Maj Gen Hak.

Major General Sam Samoun, Kampong Speu provincial police chief, said police officers have educated the people about the sub-decree so they are informed how to prevent traffic accidents.

“2020 is the year of strictly enforcing the Road Traffic Law, so all police officers have continued to have this new sub-decree disseminated in April in urban and rural areas so people participate in carrying it out,” he said.

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