Majority dislike extra traffic fine
THE National Institute of Development Administration (Nida) conducted an opinion survey on 1,250 people during March 29-31 and found 65.28% disagreed with 1,000-baht extra charge imposed in February on traffic fine payments later than seven days.
Among popular comments were the seven-day period was too short, it might take longer for people to find out they had been issued the ticket and ones left on the windshield could be lost, people may be far from the where the payment can be readily made, warnings should be given before the extra fine is imposed and convenient payment channels
The majority comments by the other 31.44% who supported the idea was the improvement of motorists’ discipline and law enforcement.
Top: A man paying a traffic fine. Photo: Bangkokpost.com
Pickup truck ban put off
The recent social uproar about the police’s plan to ban travelling in the cabs and beds of pickup trucks during Songkran resulted in defeat with the police agreeing to relax the ban until after Songkran except for the seat belts requirement.
The plan was the enforcement of the NCPO (National Council for Peace and Order) order by the police, aimed to prevent record-high accidents, injuries and casualties during the annual traditional Thai New Year or Songkran festival when many travel and have water fights on bare pickup beds.
Police on Wednesday evening agreed to relax the ban until after Songkran but did not specify when and will resort to giving warnings instead of imposing a fine for the time being.
First inset: Thais traveling and having fun in various ways on pickup trucks. Photo: Khaosod.co.th
EEC approves U-tapao plan
Wednesday April 5, Secretary-general of the EEC (Eastern Economic Corridor) Policy Committee Kanit Sangsubhan said the committee, chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, has approved the plan to upgrade the 6,500 rai areas around U-tapao airport into a special aviation investment promotion zone.
The 8-billion-baht budget for second runway was also approved on the same day, expecting to be finished in 3 years and will allow public-private partnership (PPP) for its second terminal which is aimed for completion in 5 years.
The 6,500-rai aviation zone is open for 100% foreign investment in aircraft-related business, air cargo and warehouses.
The combined-200-billion-baht U-tapao development project is part of Thailand’s regional aviation hub plan. The first phase is to raise the airport’s capacity from 3 million to 15 million passengers, the second phase calls for servicing 30 million passengers in 10 years. The final stage is to handle 60 million passengers in 20 years.
Second inset: Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha addressing the EEC Policy Committee meeting on upgrading areas around U-tapao airport. Photo: Thaipublica.org
Power supply is the latest target
Night of Thursday April 6, series of explosions, burning of car tires and strewing of spikes on roads were reported in areas of the three southernmost provinces and part of Songkhla with no casualties; leaving a total of 52 power poles in 19 districts of Yala, Pattani, Narathiwat and Songkhla damaged and resultjng in large areas of blackouts.
EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) squads and forensic police inspected the scenes on Friday morning.
The spokesman of the 4th Army Region’s Internal Security Operations Command (Isoc) Col Pramote Prom-in said that there were no attacks on military targets. The insurgents had targeted electricity supply.
In Narathiwat, of the 12 districts where a series of bombs exploded, 20 power poles in 8 districts were damaged. Spikes were scattered on the road.
In Pattani, all 12 districts had continual explosions heard throughout the early hours of Friday followed with entire province blackout. Eighteen power poles in 6 districts were found damaged.
In Yala, 8 power poles in 3 district were damaged.
In Songkhla, 6 power poles in 2 districts were damaged.
Below: Officials inspect a knocked down power pole in one of the southernmost provinces. Photo: tmd.go.th
By Piboon Awasdaruharote