Statistics Show Proposed Songkran Alcohol Ban Doesn’t Make Much Sense

by Admin on April 3, 2019

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A ban on alcohol sales during Songkran festival being pushed by the Alcohol Control Committee in an attempt to protect motorists doesn’t make much sense, according to statistics.

Songkran takes places on April 13, which is the day with the highest traffic fatalities in Thailand.

But upon closer inspection of even the government’s own traffic statistics, the Songkran booze prohibitions seems like the wrong approach.

For example, the number of road accidents during Songkran dropped from 4,900 in 2007 to 3,500 in 2016.

During that same time period, the total number of traffic accidents per year in Thailand jumped from 39,600 in 2007 to 43,400 in 2015.

In that same stretch of time, the total number of alcohol drinkers only by 2% versus the 10% rise in traffic accidents.

These facts show that traffic accidents in Thailand are not really tied to alcohol consumption, meaning alcohol bans are not the right solution–whether it’s during Songkran or not.

The government’s own numbers also show that the increase in road accidents over the past decade has primarily been caused by motorists exceeding speed limits (up 70%), overtaking (up 125%), tailgating (up 103%), inexperienced drivers (up 123%), and failure to give the right away (up 133%).

All of these stats show that Thailand’s huge increase in traffic incidents are due to poor driver habits and behaviors, not alcohol.

Also, Thailand already has the Land Traffic Act, which makes it a crime to drive drunk. Penalties include up to one year in prison or a 20,000 baht fine–or both.

According to Thailand accident attorneys, the most frequent cause of traffic accidents and fatalities is alcohol and drug-impaired drivers.

The Thai government has also proposed driver awareness and education campaigns and increased enforcement during Songkran.

Read the full story here.

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