Vehicles owners warned

PHUKET CITY: In the latest move to reduce motor mayhem on Phuket, it has been announced that anyone who lends a vehicle to an unlicensed driver will face a fine of 500 baht and seizure of the vehicle. Pol Lt Col Jeerasak Siamsak, Inspector of Traffic Police at Phuket City Police Station, told the Gazette that although the facility to fine errant vehicle owners as well as drivers has long existed in Thai law, it has rarely been enforced until now. “[Unlicensed drivers] think that they can drive, but they don’t know the traffic laws because they haven’t trained or taken a test at the Provincial Transportation Office (PPTO),” Col Jeerasak said. One excuse favored by out-of-province motorists pulled over without a license was that they were unable to return to the province in which they were registered to renew their licenses. This, sadly is no longer a valid excuse – drivers may now renew their licenses in any province, regardless of where they might be registered. A crackdown on unlicensed riders earlier this year led to an increase in the number of people taking car and motorcycle tests from 65 a day to around 120. (See Gazette Online at Driving tests in Thailand tend to be simple, cheap affairs – 105 baht and 55 baht respectively for a car or motorcycle license – yet figures from the PPTO suggest that one in five road users in Phuket is unlicensed. On this basis, 290 of the 363 accidents recorded over Songkran Week involved drivers who had passed the required two-hour training and test session. Col Jeerasak also said that some police officers had been tricked by motorists with fake driving licenses produced using color photocopiers. “We sometimes check the licenses too quickly,” he admitted. “We must check more thoroughly.”

Phuket News
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Legacy Phuket Gazette

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

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