The Law

Why is Kanpithak Patchimsawat still allowed to drive?

You might not remember the name Kanpithak Patchimsawat. You might not know his other title "Mu Ham" either. But if you have been following Thai news in the last year you will remember the story of a crazy kid who had a fight with a bus driver, hit him in the face with a brick, and then got back into his Mercedes and drove it into the people who had just got out of the bus he was involved in an accident with.

He killed one and injured several other people in that incident. He deliberately drove his car into a group of people and killed one of them!

Mazda BT-50 Biodiesel Test - Results are in

Mazda have completed their BT-50 bio-diesel B2 and B5 test and have posted a press release which declares the success of the test. I have included the full press release below, but I would like to point out a few things that had me wondering.

Mazda BT-50 image

Thai Actor Speeds and Brags About It - Krish Suwannaphab

This has to be one of the craziest articles I've seen in The Nation in some time. What I am surprised at is that there isn't even a single hint throughout the piece that there is anything wrong with this Thai actor's idea of priorities.

Dept. of Land Transport wants to know where you've been

RFID tag

The Department of Land Transport plans to make it law for all vehicles in Thailand to have a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag embedded in the vehicle-tax sticker. In a cooperation with the National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA), the Transport Ministry hopes to develop the RFID technology and deployment with a national RFID project trial this year.

The plan is to use Ultra High Frequency (UHF) RFID tags which would store information such as the car's registration identification, name of the owner and tax records. The RFID tag would be readable within a 10 meter range and can be read even with vehicles moving at 60 km/h.

New drunk driving laws on the way

There was a piece in The Nation yesterday about proposed amendments to the Land Transport Act 1979, which will make alcohol tests mandatory for drunk drivers. Those who refuse the test will be considered to be drunk and punished accordingly.

According to the article, the proposals should be in effect in time for the 2007 Songkran Festival.

Government wants more money

According to a story in The Nation, the Thai Excise Department are looking for ways to make more money.

Of primary interest to the motor industry is the possibility of a change in the way motor excise is calculated. The new system would calculate excise tax based on the retail price of the vehicle, rather than the "manufacturers price".

Pumping gas, 24hrs a day

From 1st December Thailand's gas stations will once again be allowed to open all night, overturning a law that has been in effect since 12th July which forced the closure of gas stations between 22:00 and 05:00.

The law was part of the Thaksin administration's energy-saving campaign, and was intended to reduce overall fuel consumption.

Drunk Driver Sentenced to Death

A Thai man has been sentenced to death for charges related to drink driving. This story made international news and you can read the full story on CNN.com, here (Link has expired and is no longer available). The 23-year-old man was responsible for the deaths of 4 people in a drunk-driving rampage in 2004.

Road tax cheats and their blue registration plates!

Ever wondered why some Thai pickup trucks have blue lettering on their registration plates? Friday's Bangkok Post has an interesting article in their motoring section on the subject. The article concludes: "If you see a four-door pickup with blue license plates and there is no roof or extra seats - that vehicle is illegally registered and the owner is not worthy of being called a respectable citizen of the country."

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