Road Accidents Kill 13 on First Day of Khmer New Year

Motorists and cars make their way in traffic near an over pass under construction in Phnom Penh on February 6, 2024. Photo: AFP

PHNOM PENH—Up to 13 people died due to traffic accidents across the country during the first day of the Khmer New Year celebration.

According to the Cambodian National Police’s report, among the 13 victims, there were 7 women.“Besides the 13 deaths, there were up to 30 people injured," the report noted, adding that the accidents were mainly caused by disrespecting traffic rules as well as reckless driving behavior, including overspeeding and drunk driving.

The rate of road accidents has surged as Cambodians observe Khmer New Year, also known as Chol Chnam Thmey, which spans four days from April 13 to April 16.

During this time, people across the country travel to reunite with their families and participate in celebratory gatherings, a situation that increases the risk of road accidents.

On April 10, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sar Sokha, who also serves as chairman of the National Committee for Road Safety, urged people to remain vigilant and adhere strictly to traffic safety measures during the Khmer New Year celebration.

Sokha also noted that traffic accidents tend to increase during festivals, leading to higher casualties and damages.

In 2023, the three days of Khmer New Year celebrations only witnessed 18 deaths and around 80 injuries in road traffic accidents across the country.


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