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The zebra crossings in Thailand are life-threatening crossings


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Thailand unsurprisingly tops the list in Southeast Asia and Asia for road fatalities in the latest report from the World Health Organization (WHO), averaging 32.7 people for every 100,000.

These averages are known for the following countries: Vietnam (26.4), Malaysia (23.6), Myanmar (19.9), Cambodia (17.8), Laos (16.6), East Timor (12, 7), the Philippines (12.3), Indonesia (12.2) and Singapore (2.8).

Thailand was also ranked ninth in the top 10 countries with the highest number of road deaths worldwide. This list was mainly led by African countries.

In a report published in 2019, the Thai Health Promotion Foundation’s Road Safety Center said pedestrians are the most vulnerable.

The fate of pedestrians on Bangkok’s roads came to light last week when a police corporal on a motorcycle hit and fatally injured a female doctor while using a crosswalk.

CCTV footage shows Dr. Waralak Supawat-Jariyakul, an ophthalmologist at Chulalongkorn University Medical School, crossing the walkway in front of Bhumirajanagarindra Kidney Institute Hospital in Phya Thai district on Jan. 21. A van slows to let her pass, in front of a powerful red Ducati motorcycle, zooms into the right lane and hits Dr. Waralak, sending her flying through the air.

Corporal Norawit Buadok, the off-duty police officer who hit Waralak, was indicted Sunday on five charges, including reckless driving resulting in death, using an unlicensed vehicle, failing to drive in the left lane as required, failing to follow road markings, and not paying annual taxes. The court’s decision on the sentence is pending.

Statistics released by the Department of Highways between 2013 and 2017 show that on average, 55 per 100 crashes involve pedestrians being hit by motorists coming from the opposite direction, while 40 deaths per 100 crashes result from overtaking.

“Most of the pedestrians who died were between the ages of 45 and 59,” the report said.

Between 2014 and 2017, some 20,000 road deaths were reported in Thailand, of whom 740 were pedestrians, according to the Digital Government Development Agency (DGA).

“Most of the deaths were teenagers aged 15 to 19, followed by people aged 50 to 69,” said DGA. “Most of the accidents were caused by motorcycles, followed by cars and trucks.”

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