Thailand is one of the most dangerous countries for driving, with 32,190 road accidents in 2020 and 2021, according to the Transport Ministry and ranked first in Asia on the death rate for road accidents according to World Health Rankings.
Moreover, Thailand was rated poorly on five different factors (including estimated road death rates, maximum motorway speed limits, seat belt wearing rates, alcohol-related deaths, and blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limits), according to The Zutobi, a driver’s education portal website that publishes a new score each year, placing it second on the list of most dangerous countries to drive in.
However, there will be a significant change for Thailand’s road safety in the start of 2023. In order to improve driving behavior and lessen traffic accidents, the Royal Thai Police plans to adopt a points reduction system for traffic violations.
This kind of system is different and widely used across countries, but in Thailand, every person with a driver’s license will be given 12 points, which will be taken away for breaking traffic regulations or failing to pay traffic penalties. If all of the points are lost, the licenses will be suspended for 90 days. More importantly, If a driver’s license is suspended for the fourth time in three years, it could be terminated.
Points would be deducted for infractions such as exceeding the posted speed limit, using a phone while driving a motor vehicle, failing to wear a motorbike helmet, violating a parking restriction, and failing to let pedestrians cross at zebra crossings. Two points will be taken away for running a red light or driving in the wrong direction on purpose, such as on a one-way street while three points will be deducted for unlawful racing on a public roadway. Serious offenses like impaired driving get a four-point maximum deduction.
Points would automatically be reinstated one year after being taken away or once traffic violation offenders have completed training. More restore points would result from longer training sessions. Drivers who have less than six points or lost all of their points are eligible for instruction with a maximum of two training sessions per year.
The points deduction system was designed to deter drivers from committing the same infractions, hence enhancing road safety, so let’s look forward to the improvement of road safety in Thailand.