Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Inspection of all commercial vessels warranted: ministry

Inspection of all commercial vessels warranted: ministry

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
People taking the ferry across the Mekong River in Lvea Em district in Kandal province on October 30. Heng Chivoan

Inspection of all commercial vessels warranted: ministry

Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol has ordered officials to conduct inspections of all ferry and passenger vessels across the country and expedite the issuance of draft laws related to inland water transport to prevent accidents.

The order was issued at an October 27 press conference on the five year achievements of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, held at the Office of the Council of Ministers. It also came after a recent sinking of a ferry in Koh Chamroeun village, Kampong Phnom commune, Leouk Dek district, Kandal province, claiming the lives of 11 students.

“Cars, trucks and buses are subject to inspection, but no such regulations are in place for the vessels which ply the Kingdom’s waterways,” he said.

He acknowledged that the ferry sinking in Koh Chamroeun village was partly the fault of ministry officials, as no inspection had been carried out.

“Our officials were negligent. As we do not have a law in place yet, we should guide them. Therefore, I would ask Ieng Veng Sun, secretary of state in charge of promoting the Water Transport and Port Laws, to expedite his work. At the same time, officials should inspect each vessel and advise the owners and about what safety standards are required,” he said.

Each boat must be strong, free from leaks, and must have flotation devices for all passengers. Care must be taken not to overload them, he added.

Resident of Koh Chamroeun village But Sovath, 48, father of 13-year-old Sovath Leakena who died in the October 13 sinking, was pleased to hear that inspections had been ordered.

“These measures are an excellent idea. If every boat owner has enough lifejackets for passengers, than even if there is a sinking, the passengers will likely survive,” he told The Post.

Khiev Samphorn, 60, who is now the sole ferry operator in Koh Chamroeun, told The Post that he has 20 floatation devices for his passengers, and his boat is safe and strong. Although it can carry up to four tonnes of cargo, he will carry no more than 15 passengers, along with motorcycles and bicycles.

“The success of my business depends on their safety, so I urge them to don lifejackets when they board my boat,” he said.


  • Wing Bank opens new branch in front of Orkide The Royal along Street 2004

    Wing Bank celebrates first anniversary as commercial bank with launch of brand-new branch. One year since officially launching with a commercial banking licence, Wing Bank on March 14 launched a new branch in front of Orkide The Royal along Street 2004. The launch was presided over by

  • Girl from Stung Meanchey dump now college grad living in Australia

    After finishing her foundational studies at Trinity College and earning a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Melbourne in 2022, Ron Sophy, a girl who once lived at the Stung Meanchey garbage dump and scavenged for things to sell, is now working at a private

  • Ministry using ChatGPT AI to ‘ease workload’; Khmer version planned

    The Digital Government Committee is planning to make a Khmer language version of popular artificial intelligence (AI) technology ChatGPT available to the public in the near future, following extensive testing. On March 9, the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications revealed that it has been using the

  • Wat Phnom hornbills attract tourists, locals

    Thanks to the arrival of a friendly flock of great hornbills, Hour Rithy, a former aviculturist – or raiser of birds – in Kratie province turned Phnom Penh tuk tuk driver, has seen a partial return to his former profession. He has become something of a guide

  • Ministry orders all schools, public and private, to close for SEA Games

    From April 20 to May 18, all public and private educational institutions will be closed to maintain order and support Cambodia's hosting of the 32nd SEA Games and 12th ASEAN Para Games, said a directive from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport. Cambodia will host the

  • Almost 9K tourists see equinox sunrise at Angkor Wat

    Nearly 9,000 visitors – including 2,226 international tourists – gathered at Angkor Wat on March 21 to view the spring equinox sunrise, according to a senior official of the Siem Reap provinical tourism department. Ngov Seng Kak, director of the department, said a total of 8,726 people visited Angkor Wat to