You may remember from last year the plans of the police to alleviate traffic jams in Bangkok by being strict on illegal parking. To the extent that they started to tow cars straight away if they parked in a way that blocked traffic. Of course, all of this went out of the window once the protests started. I think partly because the police were distracted elsewhere, but also because people just didn’t respect them any more. One photo earlier on in the protests comes to mind of police being herded by protesters like cattle.
I’ve driven around Bangkok a number of times since the protests started. Near rally sites people were not only parking by the side of the road, but also double parking anywhere they liked. The apparent lawlessness wasn’t just in the protest zones. At red lights, if no cars were coming, people just drove through them. The same went for illegal u-turns and driving in bus lanes. I know some people were doing this before, but it just seems more prevalent at the moment.
But, all of this is about to change. The police have announced that they will have a crackdown on bad driving in Bangkok. You might think this will start straight away. But, no, they want to make it a clean month and won’t start for a couple more weeks. Starting from 1st March 2014, police in Bangkok will be strict (again) on the following traffic violations:
- Parking in non parking areas
- Double parking
- Parking on footpaths
- Driving on footpaths
- Driving against the flow of traffic
- Overtaking other vehicles in congested traffic
- Running red lights
- Drink driving
- Not fastening seatbelt
- Using a mobile phone while driving
- Overtaking at places where it is prohibited
- Driving without a licence