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MAIL OPINION  By Shana Kongmun


Carrying on the traffic theme

Last issue I discussed the ever growing number of cars on the road and the extremely high numbers Chiang Mai saw over Loy Krathong and the first week of December did lessen a bit in the weeks before Christmas. However, the buildup to the New Year also saw the buildup of traffic. And a lessening of courtesy, it would seem.
Perhaps when testing for licenses they should include the need to not block intersections, the idea that a merging car should yield yet the driver in the main lane should also consider the traffic and letting someone in.
It seems these kinds of basics are lacking and there is a direct cause and effect to traffic flow when they don’t happen.
I live on a small soi on a busy road, inevitably, when traffic is heavy cars will block the soi, not considering that the lines are there for a reason or that someone may want to turn into the soi across traffic. Perhaps the Department of Land Transportation should consider painting the lines in the road again; perhaps they should consider signs telling people not to block them. But really, it is also just down to courtesy. The idea that there are other people on the road besides myself and that they should be considered when driving. This is something that needs to be taught from an early age as it isn’t really something that comes naturally to people.
Western people don’t queue because it is in our genes. We queue because it is ingrained in us from an early age. And despite that early training you do see people jump the queue in the West, often getting told off by the people in the queue however. This same kind of training needs to be applied to driving, driving skills and courtesy on the road. My sister lives near a town where the pedestrians have full right of way and take advantage of that, walking out into oncoming traffic assuming that the cars will see them and stop. Utter foolishness of course. Also, it seems to me to be a lack of courtesy for others on the road besides themselves. The same kind of thing you see from drivers here.
So, a call to the Land Transporation Department to make it clear to not block intersections and a call on the Education Department to start driver training classes in schools and make them mandatory. Preferably by someone who understands the rules of the road and the need for courtesy on them.

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Carrying on the traffic theme