Connect with us

Opinion

Opinion: Island View: Daily brush with death

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

PHUKET: Living in Phuket and being surrounded by beautiful hills and beaches, one sometimes tends to forget what a gamble braving the island traffic on a motorbike can really be.

Not to say that motorbike riders are hardly to blame; that’s far from being the case. However, only those of us who regularly risk our lives on two wheels in the labyrinth of four-wheeled vehicles and more, can testify to the true dangers of being a motorbike rider in Phuket.

I’ve been in Thailand for almost a year now, and after two months of spending a handsome amount on taxis, tuk tuks and bike rentals in the beginning, I felt the need to buy myself a bike – which is a pretty standard practice here. A few dozen brushes with death later, I think I’ve managed to narrow down the worst enemy of Phuket bikers: minivan drivers.

These guys hardly seem to know – or care – what or who is around them, as long as their wheels are touching the asphalt. When commuting to work, I used to take the back road near British International School to reach Koh Keaw. That is, until I experienced being run off the road by minivan drivers during the morning rush.

I’m not talking about a few wrong passes here and there. I mean switching lanes, overtaking on steep, narrow roads and generally driving with reckless abandon. Much as I love the invigorating morning air and greenery of the back road from Kathu to Koh Kaew, there are only so many times I can escape these regular brushes with death, particularly now that there is ongoing construction near the mining museum, leaving only one narrow lane for cars, motorbikes and those lethal minivans on both sides of the road.

The trudging bumper to bumper morning rush of the Samkong Underpass construction site doesn’t seem like much of an alternative, perhaps, but at least the road is wider and the possibility of staying safe ever so slightly higher. I wouldn’t say it’s a choice between a rock and a hard place – more like a rock and certain doom.

My self-preservation instinct eventually dominates and I’ll grudgingly settle for crowded and frustrating – even if just means I live to see yet another just as crowded and frustrating day.

— Zohaib Sikander

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Pattaya8 hours ago

Man found dead, tangled in cables in Bang Lamung

Coronavirus (Covid-19)10 hours ago

Japan makes donation of another 385,000 AstraZeneca vaccines

Tourism12 hours ago

Dusit Poll: Thailand is not ready for international reopening

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Myanmar12 hours ago

Burmeses junta leader not invited to ASEAN summit

Thailand13 hours ago

Covid-19 Sunday: 10,863 infections, 68 deaths, provincial data

Coronavirus (Covid-19)13 hours ago

Moderna vaccine approved as a booster shot by US FDA

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Chulabhorn Royal Academy announces vaccine booster signups

Bangkok17 hours ago

Police say they know who cut the rope of dangling condo workers

Bangkok18 hours ago

MEA says electrical wires seen in Crowe tweet are not theirs

Coronavirus (Covid-19)19 hours ago

10 provinces on Ministry of Public Health Covid-19 watchlist

Krabi1 day ago

Krabi tourism businesses not thrilled about Thailand’s reopening

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Thammasat University negotiates multiple deals for vaccines

Bangkok2 days ago

Bangkok prepares swab hubs, rules easing for city reopening

Bangkok2 days ago

Rescue workers cut stuck PVC pipe from man’s genitals

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

Covid-19 Saturday Update: 10,648 cases, 82 deaths, provincial data

Thailand1 month ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism8 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending