The Vientiane authorities have agreed to reinstate the old traffic rules for turning right at traffic lights nationwide.
Motorists are now allowed to turn right on a red light signal unless such a turn is expressly forbidden by signage but they are urged to exercise caution in doing so.
For almost four months, the Vientiane authorities introduced a new rule forbidding motorists to turn right at a red light signal in a bid to ease traffic congestion.
Vientiane authorities came to the conclusion that it was better to stop right turns at red lights to avoid accidents and reduce traffic jams.
According to the Vientiane Traffic Police, in 2015, there were over 200 accidents at traffic lights, due to various causes including drink driving, disobeying the traffic signals and turning right into oncoming traffic without looking.
The Vientiane authorities subsequently banned right turns at red lights and introduced fines ranging from 15,000 kip to 200,000 kip.
However this also caused much confusion among motorists, who did not know whether to stop or go and sometimes other drivers behind them became impatient and honked their horns.
The Vientiane Police Office Deputy Chief and Director of the Vientiane Traffic Police Department, Lieutenant Colonel YouttaphongSouvannasing confirmed yesterday that due to the confusion this rule has been revoked and the old rules reinstated.
Motorists can now turn right again at red lights but whilst exercising caution to avoid oncoming traffic with a green light ahead of it.
Besides that, many traffic lights in the capital will be improved and enlarged in a bid to negate traffic congestion.
The intersections to be improved include the traffic lights outside the national circus and various other major junctions.
The Ministry of Public Security is also installing CCTV in 19 locations around Vientiane covering the districts of Chanthabouly, Sikhottabong, Sisattanak, Xaysettha, Xaythany, Naxaithong, Hadxaifong and Pakngum.
The introduction of the new surveillance cameras will enable members of the public turn to police for help when facing an emergency situation.
It will also allow police of ficers to perform their duties in protecting and resolving incidents or disturbances immediately, using the advanced police command centre.
The project will enable police officers to oversee situations in real-time, and assist in the preparation and planning to dispatch officers to the scene immediately and effectively.
It will especially help police follow drivers or vehicles after hit-and-runs where drivers leave the scene of an accident following a spate of such incidents in the capital.
They will also be on the lookout for drivers committing other breaches of the traffic regulations.
Source: Vientiane Times