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Over 200 Fatalities in 10 Months of Traffic Accidents

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Over 200 people were killed in road accidents around Vientiane in the first 10 months of this year, with most of the crashes attributed to drunken driving.

Deputy Chief of the Vientiane Traffic Police Department, Major Sangkhom Phommalath, reported that from January to October there were 1,275 road accidents in the capital and 215 people were killed.

This was an increase on the same period last year and, once again, most road accidents occurred as a result of drunken driving and speeding.

On average about five people died each week. Most of the accidents occurred in Xaythany and Chanthabouly districts.

Some 295 people were left in a critical condition, 793 were seriously injured and 514 people were slightly injured.

In addition, 214 vehicles were written off, 1,623 sustained moderate damage and 870 vehicles sustained minor damage. The cost of the damage was estimated at over 10 billion kip. Major Sangkhom Phommalath said the Vientiane Traffic Police Department periodically runs road safety campaigns to remind motorists of the traffic regulations and hopefully prevent accidents.

Police have also been spreading the road safety message around schools and offices in the capital. They attempt to get motorists’ attention by explaining the traffic regulations, showing photos of accidents, and teaching people how to prevent accidents.

Police set up a road safety booth at the That Luang Festival this year in a bid to stem the rising number of accidents during festivals and holidays.

Last year, the police road safety booth attracted public interest thanks to its various activities and the prizes that were on offer.

The number of road accidents overall continues to increase. About 90 percent of accidents involve drunken driving, speeding and other violations of the traffic rules.

Many accidents occur on weekends and special occasions when people get together to drink. Most of the accidents involve motorbikes and occur in the evening and at night.

Source: Vientiane Times