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Police announce return of drink driving checkpoints, just in time for Songkran

Maya Taylor

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PHOTO: Flickr / the foreign photographer

Thailand’s deputy police chief says drink-driving checkpoints will return from tomorrow, following a 6-month hiatus to weed out corrupt practices. Last October, national police chief Suwat Jangyodsuk put a stop to all police checkpoints, including those checking for drink driving offences, after several complaints of corruption among officers. Following an overhaul, his deputy, Damrongsak Kittiprapas, says the checks will return in some locations, including Bangkok, from tomorrow.

According to a Nation Thailand report, the police checks will include drink-driving checkpoints where drivers may be subject to breathalyser tests. Damrongsak says the use of CCTV cameras, including body cams on officers, will ensure transparency.

“To ensure transparent operations by officers at these checkpoints, police have started installing CCTV cameras at the points as well as body cameras on officers to record their interaction with road users. Checkpoints in some provinces are now ready to operate again, such as in Bangkok, Ubon Ratchathani, and Nakhon Ratchasima.”

He adds that the checkpoints will have a sign informing drivers that CCTV is in use. If anyone wishes to file a complaint, the signs will also provide the phone number of the local commanding officer. Damrongsak says the checkpoints are being re-instated in time for the upcoming Songkran holiday, when tens of thousands of people are expected to take to the road.

“We want to start opening these checkpoints as early as April 1, as the Songkran festival is approaching, and a high volume of traffic is expected. Having these DUI checkpoints will greatly help reduce road accidents caused by drunk driving.”

He adds that procedures have been put in place to weed out unauthorised checkpoints, with all official stations now included in a specially designed database.

“Besides installing CCTV cameras, we have established the Traffic Police Checkpoint Control database to list all checkpoints in the areas to reduce an overlap. Commanding officers can use this database to easily check if there are any unauthorised checkpoints in their areas.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

 

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Avatar

    SongkranMan

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 11:52 am

    Time for tea money

  2. Avatar

    James R

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 7:56 pm

    Farangs with farang driving licences better start saving up, it costs 20,000 baht to pay your way though the checkpoint as most farang-tourists do not know the legal limit for farangs is about one small bottle of beer whereas for Thai driving licence holders they can drink much more as the limit is higher.

    (As happened to me last year in Phuket).

    That is funny as it should be the other way around seeing as a ten year old could pass a Thai driving test but a farang licence obtained abroad is a much harder driving test to pass.

    Still it keeps the cops happy so they can afford to drink and drive but get away with it as I have witnessed first hand twice.

  3. Avatar

    Roger Bruce

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 8:23 pm

    Stop 1 in every 1000 cars by the number on the road

    Big bloody deal so what …idiots

    will not do a thing

    Look at that pic 7 lanes 2 lanes only stopped and not each car as backlog would be horrendous

    In Australia if they do this all cars must stop if it takes 3 hours to f…..g bad mate they need the road toll safe and the income flowing (we are not sure in what order)
    Think the land of smiles now the land of jokes
    Good Luck Thailand

  4. Avatar

    Issan John

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 11:31 pm

    “the legal limit for farangs is about one small bottle of beer whereas for Thai driving licence holders they can drink much more as the limit is higher.”

    TOTALLY UNTRUE, James R.

    ABSOLUTE RUBBISH!

    There is NO “legal limit for farangs”.

    The legal limit is 0.2 mg of alcohol per litre of blood for ANY driver, Thai or farang, who has had a Thai driving licence for less than 5 years or only has a foreign licence (I know Thais who only have a foreign licence, not a Thai licence) and 0.5 mg for ANY driver, Thai or farang, who has had a Thai licence for 5 years or more.

    You made the same comment before, and it was rubbish then and it’s still rubbish now.

  5. Avatar

    Issan John

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 11:44 pm

    “Big bloody deal so what …idiots

    will not do a thing”

    Have you ever actually been to Thailand, Roger B – or Aus, for that matter?

    Most of these particular checkpoints are up country on the outskirts of the villages or in the cities in the “drinking” areas.

    Very, very few are on primary roads, “7 lanes 2 lanes only stopped”.

    They’re still not particularly effective as the penalties are minimal, but it’s got nothing to do with the issues you raise.

  6. Avatar

    sam

    Thursday, April 1, 2021 at 12:57 am

    Will checkpoints only for festive season really work effectively. Drink driving has been a bad habit with some people due to the lenient punishment imposed,even with fatal accidents.It should be a regular feature to stamp out high carnage that will occur in Songkran holidays.

  7. Avatar

    James R

    Thursday, April 1, 2021 at 8:09 pm

    Issan John

    In affect farang-tourists get cought and have to pay up as they do not know the silly rules.

    What stupid rules, it suggest the more experience you have in driving the more you can drink, nice encouragement to drink and drive,

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