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Police claim road accidents down, NGO says otherwise

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Last year, 1,780 people died in traffic accidents compared to 1,717 in 2016. This year, 1,736 people died in traffic accidents so far. Vireak Mai

Police claim road accidents down, NGO says otherwise

Road accidents have declined by 353 cases in the first nine months of this year, said deputy national police chief Him Yan.

However, Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation director Kim Pagna said according to its statistics, 1,900 people died in traffic accidents last year. Worse, the figure, he said, is set to rise to 2,000 in 2020 – well above its goal of 1,600.

“Traffic accidents remain a problem as Cambodia is determined to reduce the death toll by 7,350 people in 10 years. To put it simply, in 2020, we want to lower the death figures to only 1,600.

“It is difficult for us to do this and we need to put more effort to [prevent] traffic accidents,” Pagna said.

Responding, Yan said traffic police and related officials’ attention and efforts to maintain traffic safety directly caused the accident rate to reduce by 353 cases (13 per cent) in the first nine months of this year.

Fatalities, he said, were reduced by 44 people (three per cent), while the number of injured victim fell by 795 people (19 per cent) compared to the same period last year.

At a recent meeting, Yan said: “Traffic accidents will remain a problem for a long time. They kill and injure more people daily than other social problems. They negatively affect society and requires attention at all times.”

He said the National Committee for Traffic Safety drafted a 2019 Traffic Law enforcement action plan which focused on legal education, victim rescue, road improvement and maintenance and street order to ensure effective prevention measures.

The plan, he said, will improve the effectiveness of traffic law enforcement and reduce accidents despite the number of drivers gradually increasing in the Kingdom.

Last year, 1,780 people died in traffic accidents compared to 1,717 in 2016. This year, 1,736 people died in traffic accidents so far.

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