To Chiangmai Mail and various government officials,
I enjoy living in Chiang Mai a lot. Pretty much
everything’s nice, beautiful and relaxing. But there is one thing which
isn’t any of the above mentioned things: traffic. Traffic here is
absolutely horrible. People drive recklessly, don’t use turning lights,
and suddenly decide that they need to cross three lanes on the highway to
get to the off-ramp, overload trucks so you always have to be on the lookout
for objects falling off and my favorite, ignoring red lights.
But it’s not like the rules of the road get enforced by
anybody with authority (I’m not even sure if there are any rules…),
police just cluster together at corners of major streets causing huge
traffic jams. I’ve even seen police officers totally ignoring the fact
that other vehicles are on the road driving and running out to the middle of
the road to stop some motorcycle, which ends up getting away anyway.
One suggestion would be to have a lot more patrol cars
driving around with officers behind the wheel who aren’t too lazy to chase
We also have the red buses. Total nightmare. Most of them
spew out way too much exhaust fumes, cut centimeters in front of other cars
without even showing some kind of signal and park in the middle of the road
or, better yet, just around curves to let passengers on or off.
Another huge problem is the whole traffic light thing.
They are all programmed totally wrong! If you wait at one traffic light and
it turns green, you arrive just in time to see the next one turn red. And
then again, if you don’t believe me, just take a cruise down the canal
road and you’ll soon see what I mean. If you would just take the time to
calculate everything so people can get a “green-wave” at intersections,
the fuel consumption would drop so much, because right now so much gas is
wasted on accelerating at each red light. I’m sure that’s why so many
people just ignore them and keep on driving.
But I must compliment you on the use of solar-powered
warning lights at various places in the city. I’m looking forward to some