Crossing Cambodia

Monday, April 18, 2011

Chasing cars, shortly after Khmer New Year

Dare I mention, that this be my last entry? Time to move on. Nearly five years (just a month short) and over 400 entries no less, so if my readers have failed to pick up the essentials of travel and traffic in Cambodia and Phnom Penh in particular ... well, more postings won't help!

To sum up, getting about here is anarchic, lawless and down right reckless. Then again, I haven't had an accident in the nearly 6 years I've been here, so driving around with caution helps. But I also know of many others less fortunate....

Oh well, the news
  • I's have liked to start with a posting on tripadvisor concerning poor services rendered by a local bus company, but tripadvisor have deleted the thread. Huh.
  • It is the time of the year for accidents to be more commonplace. More movement, more alcohol. But even before the festivities started accidents happened. Phnom Penh Post (6 March 2011) reports on a horrific accident near Sihanoukville where a container truck hits a minivan (with 25 persons, hows that possible?). Nineteen deaths. The said accident lead to NGO's
    'expressing concern'.
  • Travelfish have added their own entry on traffic accidents in Cambodia:
    'Getting into a traffic accident anywhere is serious, but in Cambodia it's particularly so .... only to find out that there's generally no enforcement and no punishment ...'.
    Their advice is Get insured, Be prepared, Have all kinds of emergency numbers at hand and wear a helmet.
  • More air traffic. Besides the (re-) launch of Air France flights, Korean Air will deploy bigger aircraft on Cambodia, effectively increasing capacity by 50% to Seoul (Phnom Penh Post, 9 March 2011). There are also
    'feasiblility studies'
    underway for finding out whether or not direct flights can be made to the UK or Turkey (Phnom Penh Post, 23 March 2011).
  • More news on the fight of Hun Sen vs. the trucks:
    '“I’m very concerned about trucks loading containers. It seems that accidents would happen easily and the issues repeated again and again. Therefore, you must be cautious, and you who don’t work on this have to resign from your position,” Hun Sen said. The Ministry of Commerce needs to shut down some transportation companies that continue to violate the law.” Hun Sen also appealed to provincial governors to stop illegal road checkpoints and ensure that roads are repaired and maintained'.
    Wish him luck with that. Also with his appeal to ensure all involved adhere to the traffic law, which has proven to be impossible. Not worth the paper it's printed on.
  • But, presto, a day later 25 trucks were
    Phnom Penh Post, 18 March 2011).
  • A first hand experince with the new Monivong parking fee collectors from Khmer 440. Lots of questions.
  • Cambodian electric vehicles? Possibly, according to Phnom Penh Post (March 22, 2011). A local company in conjunction with
    'local inventor Nhean Phaloek – who once reportedly claimed that the doors to one of his prototype vehicles opened telepathically'
    will seek to produce at least 500 cars on an annual basis.
  • A nice blog entry on Lto Cambodia on road signs in Sihanoukville which actually encourage road users to go up the wrong way of a one way street!
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