Fines have been announced targeting individuals or entities who breach the law on road construction, as per the finance and transport ministries.

The penalties are specifically aimed at those contracted to build roads but fail to meet the required technical standards.

The decision was detailed by the ministries in a February 10 joint directive, stating they have established a comprehensive list of fines and prepared an extensive report that outlines various offences and their corresponding fine amounts, taking into account the aggravating circumstances of each infraction.

Articles 52-55 of the road construction law stipulate that any person or entity licensed to build a road must adhere to the specific equipment and technical requirements outlined in the construction plan. 

It said failure to comply will result in varying penalties, depending on the nature of the violation. The fine increases when there is a complete absence of the required equipment and decreases when machinery is used but does not meet technical standards.

The penalties stipulated for offenders of the law range from 1 to 10 million riel ($250 to $2,500).

“The fines will be allocated to the public works ministry. [They] are distinct from those for overweight vehicles, as outlined in the road traffic law,” stated the directive.

Violators are obligated to rectify their equipment setup to align with the contract’s provisions.

Kim Pagna, country director of the Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation, expressed support for the initiative on February 11, viewing it as a positive step towards improving traffic laws to ensure driver security during travel. 

He said that safe roads are those that are in excellent condition, without damage, and do not present obstacles. 

He emphasised the importance of traffic signals and lane markings, noting that weak roads prone to damage or with faded signals and guidelines can lead to a loss of crucial information for drivers, leading to accidents.

“Overall I support the inter-ministerial announcement, but I ask that [it] be applied to law-breakers transparently, equally and properly. We want our roads to meet technical standards and have correct signals and markings to ensure the safety of our drivers and passengers,” Pagna said. 

He suggested that the relevant ministries carry out rigorous inspections of individuals or companies responsible for road construction to ensure their work meets technical specifications.