Starting today (Monday), motorists or motorcyclists who refuse or fail to pay fines associated with traffic tickets may face arrest, said Deputy Commissioner of Metropolitan Police Bureau Pol Maj Gen Jirasan Kaewsang-ek.
He said police will ask the courts to issue warrants for the arrest of alleged offenders who fail to pay fines after being warned once and served twice with summonses.
He also warned that those who face arrest may have their names recorded in police criminal records and in the central data base of the Provincial Administration Department, which could mean that they have problems at immigration when wishing to travel abroad and could be deprived of some rights when conducting legal transactions or even when applying for jobs.
He said that traffic tickets will be issued by traffic police, after being caught violating traffic regulations, by mail after being caught by CCTV allegedly violating traffic regulations or by an e-ticketing device.
The tough measures, said Pol Maj Gen Jirasan, are necessary after it was discovered that many violators have refused to pay the fines, some of whom have been issued with up to 59 tickets.
He reasoned that the measures are intended to reduce traffic violations and road accidents, adding that police will check traffic tickets issued during the past 12 months, because they are still valid, though the police will focus on repeat offenders.
Thailand’s roads are among the deadliest in the world, and the most fatal in Southeast Asia, according to the World Health Organization. About 20,000 people die in road accidents each year, which averages about 2 every hour.