Source: Vientiane Times
Motorists in Vientiane will face ten-fold fines from now on if they violate a new city ban on the use of pavements, sidewalks or roadsides where parking is prohibited.
In a warning for motorists, this includes all roads where the kerb and channeling is painted red and white, so members of the public will need to think more carefully about where they park their cars.
The new city ban comes into effect this week, stipulating that pavements and roads can no longer be used by vehicles as it is blocking the passage of moving traffic and also pedestrians.
The ban was brought in to try and ease traffic chaos and create more room for pedestrians, who are forced to climb over vehicles or walk on the roads to avoid parked vehicles.
Deputy Director of Vientiane Traffic Police Department Lieutenant Colonel Bounmark Soundalay told Vientiane Times that the new ban aimed to ensure motorists remember and not intend to violate the traffic regulations.
“We have relaxed the regulations for a long time and I think that it’s time for us to enforce them strictly aiming to encourage motorists to respect the regulations,” he said.
The ban was stipulated in the Resolution of Vientiane Authorities in regard to the Vientiane cleaning action plan and project until 2020 which was approved late last year.
According to the resolution, motorbikes which were previously liable to be fined 30,000 kip, with the ten-fold fine, will now have to pay 300,000 kip. Three-wheeled vehicles which were previously fined 50,000 kip shall be liable for a fine of 500,000 kip.
Cars, pick-up trucks, jeeps and vans which could be fined 70,000 kip shall now have to pay 700,000 kip.
Four-wheeled passenger buses which were fined 100,000 kip can now be liable for a fine of 1,000,000 kip while six-wheeled heavy trucks which were liable for a fine of 150,000 kip will now have to pay 1,500,000 kip.
Trucks with 10 or more wheels which could be fined 200,000 kip will now have to pay 2,000,000 kip.
The tough enforcement of the new city ban took place amidst strong complaints from the general public who said the measure is being put in place without the arrangement of adequate parking spaces for motorists.
Critics say the fines are too high and motorists should be given warnings before any action can take place.
Vientiane has faced a parking crisis for several years due to the rising number of vehicles and lack of parking space development.
The lack of parking space has forced motorists to violate the traffic regulations by parking their vehicles on streets and sidewalks.
Lieutenant Colonel Bounmark said many motorists have been fined since the ban came into force earlier this week. For those who fail to pay the fines, the police will take them to the police station until the fines are paid.
Police in all nine districts have been deployed to inspect and enforce the regulations.
Setthathirath and Samsaenthai Roads used to be parking areas but now they can be seen without vehicles parking along the roadsides.
Members of the public should be aware that the ban also applies to small roads in the capital where parking is prohibited and also sidewalks and pavements.
Motorists violating non-parking signs and those using sidewalks to do businesses will also face tough fines by authorities.
“From now one we will not give any warnings before the ten-fold fines because motorists already have driving licenses, meaning that they already know the traffic rules. If they violate them, it means they intended to do it,” Lieutenant Colonel Bounmark said. Vientiane has a population of 850,000 people but the number of vehicles has risen to 740,000 vehicles.
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