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Midweek Rant: Seven deadly days – it’s just a Songkran smokescreen

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Midweek Rant: Seven deadly days – it’s just a Songkran smokescreen

 

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Every year it is just more of the same

 

BANGKOK: -- With two or three weeks to go before the Songkran festival every Tom, Dick and Somchai from every authority up and down Thailand comes crawling out of the woodwork to announce the latest gimmick for ending the carnage on the roads.

 

Whether it is impounding cars of drink drivers, threatening the convicted with horror trips to the morgue, the checkpoints, the bans on water throwing, blocking up the U-turns, the threats to actually enforce the law…..

 

Whatever. I have had it up to here.

 

Why?

 

Shouldn’t we be glad that the authorities are getting their collective fingers out and doing something to save lives at last?

 

Nonsense – it is just one almighty face-saving smokescreen.

 

Songkran – and to a slightly lesser extent New Year in December/January – are just the biggest of all Thai scapegoats when it comes to the disgraceful inactivity when it comes to improving road safety.

 

The police, the politicians, and the press that really connives with them with their daft statistics every – are all guilty of making it look as though the appalling carnage and mayhem on the roads is a problem specific to April and the turn of the year.

 

Figures might show it is slightly less horrendous than last year. So what does that prove?

 

Nothing. It almost hoodwinks the public into believing that something is improving. Something is being done.

 

Rubbish – it is just lip-service to the problem.

 

There is also this idea that if something is done at twice a year then the problem will somehow go away.

 

Well, it won’t.

 

It will just get shuffled under a Thai carpet of shame.

 

Everybody should all be reminded, constantly, that this is not something peculiar to drink and drug fuelled holidays – this is a national disgrace that is killing perhaps seventy to a hundred people every single day.

 

Not just the seven deadly days of Songkran. Not just the week at New Year. But every bloody, worthless day.

 

Children are dying. Adults are dying. Old people are dying. Rich and poor. Car drivers and motorcyclist. Thais and visitors alike are being mown down, killed and maimed virtually every few seconds.

 

I’m not here to offer any answers. You are paid to come up with the answers.

 

I’m just here to say stop treating the problem as a biannual phenomenon – and come up with some coherent strategy to deal with the situation.

 

A strategy that looks at 365 days a year. A strategy that puts a plan in place for the next five, then ten, then twenty years.

 

You owe it to the people who are dying at your hands. Sure, as the PM howled last week in his own rant the people are often to blame. But the people need your help. They need to be saved from themselves.

 

And the people sure as hell know that this is a nightmare they face every single day. On every single journey on the roads of the big cities or the lanes of the countryside.

 

Whether it’s 16,000 or 26,000 dead each year I know not. Whatever it is, it’s appalling.

 

What I do know is that this is a matter of the utmost national importance. It is your own flesh and blood. Your own “phee nong” you profess to care about. Your children’s own future.

 

So start taking it seriously each and every day of each and every month.

 

And stop patting yourself on the back for doing something about it once or twice a year.

 

Stop hiding behind the Smokescreen of Songkran or the New Year Scapegoat.

 

And get your fingers out.

 

Or you’ll all have the blood of a million deaths on your hands over the next half century.

 
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-- © Copyright Thai Visa News 2017-04-05

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Well written & spot on in every aspect....It is total carnage out there.

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2 hours ago, Jessi said:

Well written & spot on in every aspect....It is total carnage out there.

should be in Thai language and on major Thai forums and Facebook

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4 hours ago, webfact said:

And get your fingers out.

 

No good...if they still leave the heads in there. 

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I don't know who wrote this but he/she was SPOT on! it needs to be read by every Thai citizen and gov't official especially the PM! but it won't because the thai's are set in their backward ways and will  continue to kill each other daily. with all the "entitled" people getting away with murder, what do you expect.?

kudo's to the writer, hope he can keep out of jail.

 

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I applaud the writer of this article... hit the nail right on the head!!   Have to agree with many of the comments already made particularly about having it translated to Thai and passed onto all national newspapers for publication.  I see todays news that FINALLY they are making riding in the back of pickups ILLEGAL... NOT BEFORE TIME!!

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Would also help if the Thai Government counted all deaths from accidents and not just those who die at the scene of the accident. Numbers would be way higher if they counted those who were rushed to the hospital and died hours later but these figures are not included in the Seven Deadly Days numbers

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As long as the police sell "indulgences" there is no hope for permanent improvement.

It is rather like the catholic church in 16th century Europe.

You only need to look at the glory of St Peter's  and the papacy to know that money flowed up through the system

The reformation was brutal, but that is what it took to change the system.

The Thai police force has many similarities to the pre-reformation catholic, and the only solution would be equally radical.

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Good piece. Well written. As with many issues in this country, all roads lead back to law enforcement. Thailand has plenty of laws relating to speeding, drink driving, tailgating, pedestrian crossings, running red lights etc. etc. Rarely enforced. Result - road carnage.

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26 minutes ago, pattayadgw said:

I applaud the writer of this article... hit the nail right on the head!!   Have to agree with many of the comments already made particularly about having it translated to Thai and passed onto all national newspapers for publication.  I see todays news that FINALLY they are making riding in the back of pickups ILLEGAL... NOT BEFORE TIME!!

Riding in the back of pickups is already illegal. All they are really saying is, for a change and until they can't be bothered again, they intend to enforce it. Which they won't because it would affect tens of thousands of people a day.

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1 hour ago, williamgeorgeallen said:

interesting stats. an average of 2500 americans/year dies during the vietnam war. 13 000 people die a year on thailands roads. thats over 5 times as many dieing on thailands roads per year.

Not sure where you got your stats from but different sources seem to indicate 70-80 a day, around 28000 a year with 70% on motorbike.

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Tougher action on the rules and laws of the roads would be a good place to start, i see every day people getting pulled over for no license, no helmets, to young to drive, no insurance , and what do the police do...... 400 baht fine and then you can drive away ? DRIVE away, still braking the law but its ok now as you have been fined , if you have no license, insurance, or are to young to drive the bike or car it should be impounded on the spot, if you have no helmet you should be made to go and buy one before getting you vehicle back, a cheap helmet here is 2 -300 baht its just common sense.

im not saying this would fix the problem but it would be a bloody good start.

 

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vereything is done half a55ed here in Thailand, and everyone thinks they have done a wonderfull face saving job.

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