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BMA claims pavement riding campaign success

Motorcycles, recently.

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City Hall's campaign to crack down on motorcyclists riding or parking on pavements has seen the number of offenders caught by police fall by 37% during its 16 months, according to the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA).

"The decrease shows that riders are scared of paying the 2,000-baht penalty fine that the BMA introduced," Suphakit Boonkan, deputy director of the BMA's Municipal Police Department told the Bangkok Post.

In August, fines for the offence were raised to 2,000 baht from 1,000 baht, after the BMA in July last year declared war against riders using pedestrian pavements. Initially, the BMA raised the penalty from 500 baht to 1,000 baht but saw little change to motorcyclists' behaviour.

In September last year, 1,978 violators were arrested. One year later that number had fallen to 1,241.

Since July 9 last year, BMA officials have arrested 24,337 motorcycle riders and collected about 17 million baht in fines.

"BMA officials just have done their best to arrest law-disobeying riders. The rest depends on riders' awareness," Sakoltee Phattiyakul, deputy Bangkok governor, said on Tuesday.

While the city administration is continuing its push to keep motorcycles off the pavements, Mr Sakoltee offered a more conciliatory tone with regard to the recent crackdown on street food vendors.

"Some street vending areas must continue. One thing that is certain is that it is impossible to remove all street food vendors from Bangkok. However, we need to establish a policy that clarifies which streets trading is allowed and what rules these street food vendors need to follow," said Mr Sakoltee.

So far, the BMA has axed 508 street vending spots in 50 districts, some of them including food vendors. However, 175 spots are still active in 19 districts.

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Vocabulary:

awareness : the state of knowing about something - การรับรู้, การทราบ

axe (verb): to stop something or get rid of something or someone - ยกเลิก

BMA (noun): the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration; the local government of Bangkok - กรุงเทพมหานคร

conciliatory (adj): having the intention or effect of making angry people calm; ready to give up something in a return for an agreement - ซึ่งประนีประนอมกัน,ซึ่งผูกไมตรี, มีแนวโน้มที่เป็นมิตร

crackdown : strong action that someone in authority takes to stop a particular activity - การใช้กำลังเข้าปราบปรามของเจ้าหน้าที่

declare : to state something firmly and clearly - ยืนยัน

disobey : to refuse to do what a person, law, order, etc. tells you to do; to refuse to obey - ไม่เชื่อฟัง

pavement : a path with a hard surface beside a road. The American word is sidewalk - ทางเดิน, ฟุตบาท

penalty : a punishment, or the usual punishment, for doing something that is against a law - โทษ

scared : frightened, or worried - ตระหนก, ตกใจ, หวาด, ผวา

violators (noun): people who go against or refuse to obey a law, an agreement, etc. - ผู้ฝ่าฝืน, ผู้ละเมิดกฎ

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