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Important rules and behaviours for driving in Thailand


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On 10/16/2021 at 9:25 AM, Transam said:

Going by the thread heading.

Anyone coming to LOS for the first time and wants to drive, beware.........😲

I have been driving in LOS for many years, so I think the few points l make out maybe will be helpful.....

Firstly, I doubt anyone here has been taught to drive properly, as you were in farangland.

Your best friend is your nearside door mirror, check it is set properly.

Road signs, traffic lights, zebra crossings, well, many locals think they are a nuisance being there, so use their own rules, so do not take anything for granted that all is safe, keep your eyes "wide" open at all times.

Do buy a tyre pressure gauge, or be sure to point out the tyre pressures for your car, and see it is done correctly, trust me on that.

Drink-driving is pandemic, expect anything to happen on the roads.

Many riders on scooters cannot operate their brakes, why, they may have an umbrella, phone, baby or dog etc, using up one hand/arm, beware of these people.

A dash cam is very useful, as here it is rare for someone to admit their fault, plus it will sway the BiB from taking sides.

Rarely do folk give way, rarely do folk let you out of a turning, rarely do folk let you finish a three point turn, they rather risk a scrape, crazy stuff.

Be extra careful at U-turns, one of the most ridiculous road set-ups, a regular killer, perhaps one day they may consider the use of roundabouts...

Roundabout.jpg.492ac8d3cfa30bdc8baeeeb2b4cb4264.jpg

Let's be careful out there......😊

Helmet.webp.44ea8b0f6700bac0882b5d998e2c808e.webp

Good advice, don’t forget you can turn left at a red light. Flashing red lights mean you can go through but be careful 

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On 10/16/2021 at 9:25 AM, Transam said:

Firstly, I doubt anyone here has been taught to drive properly, as you were in farangland.

Your best friend is your nearside door mirror, check it is set properly.

Road signs, traffic lights, zebra crossings, well, many locals think they are a nuisance being there, so use their own rules, so do not take anything for granted that all is safe, keep your eyes "wide" open at all times.

Do buy a tyre pressure gauge, or be sure to point out the tyre pressures for your car, and see it is done correctly, trust me on that.

Drink-driving is pandemic, expect anything to happen on the roads.

Many riders on scooters cannot operate their brakes, why, they may have an umbrella, phone, baby or dog etc, using up one hand/arm, beware of these people.

A dash cam is very useful, as here it is rare for someone to admit their fault, plus it will sway the BiB from taking sides.

Rarely do folk give way, rarely do folk let you out of a turning, rarely do folk let you finish a three point turn, they rather risk a scrape, crazy stuff.

Be extra careful at U-turns, one of the most ridiculous road set-ups, a regular killer, perhaps one day they may consider the use of roundabouts...

Spot on, top advice. 

Personally I enjoy driving here, even in and around Bangkok.  As Marc26 says one must drive defensively.

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On 10/16/2021 at 9:25 AM, Transam said:

Many riders on scooters cannot operate their brakes, why, they may have an umbrella, phone, baby or dog etc, using up one hand/arm, beware of these people.

I think you are under estimating scooter riders, I personally have found them to be the safest and aware road users on Thai roads, and as for carrying an umbrella, many use this as a drag parachute in an emergency stop just as a fighter plane would.

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17 minutes ago, Marble-eye said:

I think you are under estimating scooter riders, I personally have found them to be the safest and aware road users on Thai roads, and as for carrying an umbrella, many use this as a drag parachute in an emergency stop just as a fighter plane would.

Wow...I never knew that!

 

🤣

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1 hour ago, Philly said:

Good advice, don’t forget you can turn left at a red light. Flashing red lights mean you can go through but be careful 

You can turn left on red lights  ...BUT watch out for the signs telling you that you can't!

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The greatest danger in Thai roads is foreigners ... to themselves.

almost to a man they over estimate their driving skills and consider themselves better than Thai people. 

 

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On 10/16/2021 at 9:25 AM, Transam said:

Anyone coming to LOS for the first time and wants to drive, beware.........😲

This must be one of many, many things to beware of: Passing parked cars.

It's not only the driver opening the door to get out without checking behind first.
Another thing is people returning to their vehicles from a shop, for example. When approaching their vehicle from behind and stepping out into the road to open the driver's door, they have their back to the oncoming traffic.
Seeing this so many times, I can guarantee not one of them will turn to see if anything is approaching before opening the door.
 

On 10/16/2021 at 9:25 AM, Transam said:

Do buy a tyre pressure gauge, or be sure to point out the tyre pressures for your car, and see it is done correctly, trust me on that.

I have a hand-pump I use to check the tyre pressure on the car, two motorbike and a bicycle. I have a reminder set on my PC calendar to check them every month on 22nd. Sorry it's not weekly Trans, but at least it is done regularly. I do check the bicycle more often.
I have all the tyre pressures on a small laminated card in my wallet. This makes it easy to check, as front and rear aren't the same - apart from my bicycle.

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2 minutes ago, Bluesofa said:

This must be one of many, many things to beware of: Passing parked cars.

It's not only the driver opening the door to get out without checking behind first.
Another thing is people returning to their vehicles from a shop, for example. When approaching their vehicle from behind and stepping out into the road to open the driver's door, they have their back to the oncoming traffic.
Seeing this so many times, I can guarantee not one of them will turn to see if anything is approaching before opening the door.
 

I have a hand-pump I use to check the tyre pressure on the car, two motorbike and a bicycle. I have a reminder set on my PC calendar to check them every month on 22nd. Sorry it's not weekly Trans, but at least it is done regularly. I do check the bicycle more often.
I have all the tyre pressures on a small laminated card in my wallet. This makes it easy to check, as front and rear aren't the same - apart from my bicycle.

Checked mine only today. 

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10 minutes ago, Bluesofa said:

This must be one of many, many things to beware of: Passing parked cars.

It's not only the driver opening the door to get out without checking behind first.
Another thing is people returning to their vehicles from a shop, for example. When approaching their vehicle from behind and stepping out into the road to open the driver's door, they have their back to the oncoming traffic.
Seeing this so many times, I can guarantee not one of them will turn to see if anything is approaching before opening the door.
 

I have a hand-pump I use to check the tyre pressure on the car, two motorbike and a bicycle. I have a reminder set on my PC calendar to check them every month on 22nd. Sorry it's not weekly Trans, but at least it is done regularly. I do check the bicycle more often.
I have all the tyre pressures on a small laminated card in my wallet. This makes it easy to check, as front and rear aren't the same - apart from my bicycle.

Something I never worked out was why so many Thai mechanics/garages over-inflate tires....and by quite a lot.

 

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I like to think that I follow the road signs to the letter, especially when I'm paralytic. The Thais were good enough to put up signs telling drivers to drive slower if they are drunk, I took this advice and arrived safely home, I did look at the car the next day and it did have few damaged panels, probably kids messing about during the night.

it is an idea I think would work in the UK.

 

drive_slowly_if_drunk_thailand.jpg

Edited by Marble-eye
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1 hour ago, Marble-eye said:

I think you are under estimating scooter riders, I personally have found them to be the safest and aware road users on Thai roads, and as for carrying an umbrella, many use this as a drag parachute in an emergency stop just as a fighter plane would.

I agree scooter/motorbike riding is the safest way to get around.

It must be because why would anybody want to risk putting his son in front of him on the bike, his daughter behind him, his wife holding a baby behind her and using a phone at the same time, it must be safe. 🤣

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2 minutes ago, JamesR said:

I agree scooter/motorbike riding is the safest way to get around.

It must be because why would anybody want to risk putting his son in front of him on the bike, his daughter behind him, his wife holding a baby behind her and using a phone at the same time, it must be safe. 🤣

And with the dog sitting on the floor as look-out , all's well

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6 minutes ago, JamesR said:

I agree scooter/motorbike riding is the safest way to get around.

It must be because why would anybody want to risk putting his son in front of him on the bike, his daughter behind him, his wife holding a baby behind her and using a phone at the same time, it must be safe. 🤣

We were coming out of BigC car park and I kid you not there were 9 people on a scooter, admittedly the baby sat at the rear of the scooter was probably there just for ballast.

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2 minutes ago, Marble-eye said:

We were coming out of BigC car park and I kid you not there were 9 people on a scooter, admittedly the baby sat at the rear of the scooter was probably there just for ballast.

That must be a record. Of course  Thais and tyre pressures are another mystery for them. They just can't grasp the dangers of over inflation or the mechanics of how a tyre works. I guess they look upon as just something that makes them dizzy if they watch them go round too much.

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1 minute ago, gummy said:

That must be a record. Of course  Thais and tyre pressures are another mystery for them. They just can't grasp the dangers of over inflation or the mechanics of how a tyre works. I guess they look upon as just something that makes them dizzy if they watch them go round too much.

Most of them were young children and babies.........totally crazy....hopefully they were all wearing their lucky amulets. 

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41 minutes ago, gummy said:

Checked mine only today. 

Can you nip down to Phuket and check mine?

The car has been sitting in the car-port for the last 14 months, the last picture I got from a neighbour was she had to go and rescue it from vines, creeping plants etc growing from the garden and stop them from overpowering it and losing it forever.

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1 minute ago, JamesR said:

Can you nip down to Phuket and check mine?

The car has been sitting in the car-port for the last 14 months, the last picture I got from a neighbour was she had to go and rescue it from vines, creeping plants etc growing from the garden and stop them from overpowering it and losing it forever.

Not good, tyres will hopefully still be partially inflated but if not you need to take a good look at them. Battery will be flat obviously. Of course with the benefit of hindsight you could have left the keys with a neighbour just to start it up from time to time but obviously no one could possibly second guess how the government was going to deal with covid issues.

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33 minutes ago, JamesR said:

I agree scooter/motorbike riding is the safest way to get around.

It must be because why would anybody want to risk putting his son in front of him on the bike, his daughter behind him, his wife holding a baby behind her and using a phone at the same time, it must be safe. 🤣

73% of deaths and 80% of injuries are those riding or passengers on 2-wheelers.

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4 minutes ago, Khunwilko said:

73% of deaths and 80% of injuries are those riding or passengers on 2-wheelers.

Yes. That is what happens when a two tonne pick up truck hits somebody on a scooter.

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5 minutes ago, Khunwilko said:

73% of deaths and 80% of injuries are those riding or passengers on 2-wheelers.

I quote that same figure in emails to cyclists coming to stay with us passing through the country, in the hope they are more aware.
Well, before covid screwed that one up anyway.

Don't forget I speak with experience.
Seven months ago I was hit by a car driven by a doctor in a hurry to get to work - irony.
I was cycling in the wide motorbike lane on a dual carriageway. She was in the first car lane, not paying attention and veered across the lane hitting me.
 

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43 minutes ago, Marble-eye said:

We were coming out of BigC car park and I kid you not there were 9 people on a scooter, admittedly the baby sat at the rear of the scooter was probably there just for ballast.

I have heard that having kids sitting on their fathers lap while he rides the bike make good airbags.

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31 minutes ago, JamesR said:

Can you nip down to Phuket and check mine?

The car has been sitting in the car-port for the last 14 months, the last picture I got from a neighbour was she had to go and rescue it from vines, creeping plants etc growing from the garden and stop them from overpowering it and losing it forever.

Toyota Triffid?

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22 minutes ago, gummy said:

Not good, tyres will hopefully still be partially inflated but if not you need to take a good look at them. Battery will be flat obviously. Of course with the benefit of hindsight you could have left the keys with a neighbour just to start it up from time to time but obviously no one could possibly second guess how the government was going to deal with covid issues.

I did but the neighbour scarpered off back home. 🤣

I will put a brand new set of tyres on the car when I get there as my life is worth more than a few hundred quid, plus there is a battery shop in the next soi so they will bring one around and change it when I get there.

The good thing is it is hot there so the exhaust pipes will not rot like they would in the UK when the car is not used for a while. 

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