THOSE who actually pay traffic tickets in this country are a minority with most of the others completely ignoring them, especially the mailed one, Thai Rath newspaper reported today (Jan. 26, 2021).
Statistics from the Royal Thai Police’s Ticket Management system show that a total of 15,837,054 traffic tickets were issued last year, with 13,446,537 mailed to the offenders and 2,390,517 issued on the spot.
Of the over 13 million tickets sent by mail only 1,100,701 people, or 8%, bothered to pay the fine.
On the spot tickets performed better with 1,717,975 people, or 72%, paying up.
Pol. Maj. Gen. Ekkarat Limsangkas, head of the Highway Police Division, said people aren’t afraid of traffic tickets because they are valid for one year and it requires a lot of manpower and expense to chase them with the department in charge of this issue also being very small.
While the cost of mailing a ticket is 19 baht, the cost of tracking just one of them amounts to 10,000 baht when the manpower required to undertake the task and the liaising with various departments are taken into account.
And all this just to chase a 500 baht to 1,000 baht fine.
Previously drivers were concerned that if they do not pay traffic fines they would not be able to pay annual car tax. It so happens that they can in fact pay the annual tax and get a receipt for doing so but they would not get a tax disc to display on the windshield.
With this measure not seeming to work, Pol. Maj. Gen. Ekkarat said his department is moving to enforce a new law on point reduction system in the middle of this year.
He explained that under this system each driver would be given 12 points and for small offenses one point would be deducted but two to three for a repeat offense. If all the points are depleted, the driver will get a 90-day driving restriction order. For repeated offenses the licence could be revoked.
At the start of the new year, each driver gets a new set of points.
The heavy traffic and the police who enforce the regulations with the help of a lot of cameras. Photos: Thai Rath