New Year Traffic Accidents, Deaths Decrease

Celebrations ushering in the Year of the Rooster witnessed a slight decrease in both traffic accidents and fatalities compared to the previous year, according to a ministry official.

Run Rothveasna, director of the Interior Ministry’s public order department, said there were 95 traffic accidents across the country, with 43 people dying over the four days of Khmer New Year festivities, from Thursday through Sunday.

Last year, 97 accidents resulted in 47 deaths, Mr. Rothveasna said.

Major injuries took a greater drop, with 102 people suffering a serious injury in a traffic accident, down from 134 people last year.

The crashes included 44 cases of speeding and 22 cases of drunk driving, and the most accidents occurred on Battambang province’s roads, Mr. Rothveasna said.

Ear Chariya, director of the Institute for Road Safety, said that mechanisms for preventing traffic accidents in Cambodia, especially during big festivals such as Khmer New Year, “still have a lot of loopholes.”

In the past five years, New Year weekend deaths peaked in 2013 with 67 fatalities, while accidents reached their height in 2014 at 185, according to Interior Ministry figures.

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