Too many motorbikes on sidewalks to handle, police say

Too many motorbikes on sidewalks to handle, police say

Motorcyclists help the secondary school student knocked down by a motorbike being driven along the footpath on Lat Phrao Road in Bangkok on Monday. (Photo posted by Twitter user @EmaEmika.)
Motorcyclists help the secondary school student knocked down by a motorbike being driven along the footpath on Lat Phrao Road in Bangkok on Monday. (Photo posted by Twitter user @EmaEmika.)

Police have admitted they cannot prevent motorcyclists using city footpaths as roads, after a young student was knocked down by a sidewalk-hogging motorbike on Monday.

Pol Col Krisana Patanacharoen, deputy spokesman of the Royal Thai Police Office, said on Tuesday the motorcyclist would be charged with a traffic violation, and also under the sidewalk cleanliness law.

Driving a motorcycle along a footpath carried a maximum fine of 1,000 baht and the sidewalk cleanliness violation a maximum 5,000 baht fine, he said.

Police reported on Tuesday evening that the injured girl was a 16-year-old student at Bodindecha School. She was hit at a bus stop on the outbound lane of Lat Phrao Road in Wang Thong Lang district.

The girl was sent to nearby Paolo Hospital on Soi Chokchai 4.

The motorcyclist who hit her was identified as messenger Puwadol Srisamrong, 23, who waited for police at the scene of the accident. He was also charged with reckless driving causing injury.

Earlier, Pol Col Krisana admitted police could not adequately ensure public safety from motorbikes on footpaths because they just do not have the manpower, especially during rush hours.

He was responding to questions on a Twitter post by user @EmaEmika on Monday, who reported seeing a secondary school girl knocked down by a motorcycle travelling on the footpath at the mouth of Soi Lat Phrao 69 on Lat Phrao Road.

Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang said City Hall's thetsakit inspectors were also responsible for arresting motorcyclists riding on footpaths, under the pavement cleanliness law. He said these motorcyclists had no regard for other people.

However, change had to start in the minds of the motorcyclists themselves.

Meanwhile, city inspectors would continue trying to keep the footpaths safe, he said.


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