Crossing Cambodia

Friday, February 29, 2008

Chasing cars Cambodian Style, Friday the 29th of February 2008

Just a couple of mentions:
  • An update on the recent tuk-tuk - taxi situation at the airport:
    ' "Taxi drivers are not satisfied with the creation of a tuk-tuk association because, if there were tuk-tuk services at Phnom Penh International Airport, it would be a competition to get customers at the airport," said Hem Sareth, a taxi driver and representative of the Taxi Drivers' Association."[The association] would make it difficult for taxi drivers to earn a living, as local and international visitors prefer tuk-tuks to taxis".'
    This excerpt (of an interviewee (taxi-driver?)) lifted from the Mekong Times, online via EAS. Difficult to explain, competition versus no competition.
  • The road to nowhere, to Siem Reap. Something is happening:
    'I never thought I’d finally see the day, but the Siem Reap to Poipet road construction has progressed to the point of laying down pavement. Real pavement. About 20 km from Sisophon west towards Poipet is now a properly surfaced road and I imagine the remaining 25 km will be paved shortly. Sisophon to Kralanh is still dirt, but it’s good dirt'.
  • More imaginative roads:
    'An expressway linking the southern Can Tho city of Vietnam to Phnom Penh, capital city of Cambodia, will be built to facilitate the economic development in the two cities. ... The road is designed to be 35 m wide and have 6 lanes, with two more lanes likely to be added in the second phase'.
    Six lanes? Calling the current connection between these two cities one lane is even imaginative, let alone conjuring up an image of six lanes.
  • Another traffic related letter to the editor of Cambodia Daily this week:
    'Traffic accidents have become a very worrying issue with at least three deaths and 100 injuries nationally every day. According to the Ministry of Health, in some hospitals, road traffic causalities constitute more than half of the patients.It is believed that this man-made tragedy stems from human error. As such, both individuals and the government must do more to reduce road traffic accidents'.
    But what constitutes more?
    'Young drivers account for a high percentage of road users and should be the prime target for training on traffic rules and on the consequences of risking their own lives and endangering those of others. I [Sok-Kheang Ly, Phnom Penh resident] also believe that more educational programs on traffic rules should be broadcast through the media at primetime to raise awareness of this issue'.
    End of letter. What about enforcing the law?
  • Law enforcement in practice:
    'One Injured, Three Killed In Steng Treng Car Chase
    Sunday, February 24, 2008

    Stung Treng Province: An officer and two timber smugglers died and the other official got injured in Stung Treng Province after police officer car chased and touched [i.e. crashed], while overtook, the timber smuggler’s car on 22 February 2008, police said. The two illegal timber transporters, who used to be educated three times, known as Kol Bunth and his wife Srey Hiek, died at the scene, Siembok district police chief said'.
    Proof given education does not help. Hat off to the police.

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