The Transport Ministry plans to ban “lane splitting” by big-bike riders and limit their speed to 80 kilometres per hour in built-up areas for safety.
Chirute Visalachitra, deputy permanent secretary for transport, said on Tuesday that under the “lane-splitting” ban, big-bike riders would not be permitted to ride or pass between vehicles and would have to wait for traffic lights behind other vehicles in traffic lanes.
They would be required to limit their speed at 80kph in urban and community areas, he said.
In addition, the ministry would require big bike riders to undergo specially-designed tests before obtaining big bike driving licences. There would be special test fields for big bike riders and they would also undergo simulations of danger-prone situations to ensure they have a safety-first mindset, Mr Chirute said.
He added that the ministry would require foreign tourists to show driving licences that apply specifically to big bike motorbikes while renting motorcycles in the country. The requirement never previously existed and many foreigners have died in motorcycle accidents in the country, he said.
Mr Chirute did not give a timeframe for the imposition of the new rules, saying concerned officials would finalise new measures for motorcycle safety in 30 days before seeking cabinet approval. Some measures might start by the end of the year, he said without elaborating.
The Pattaya News notes that big bikes have often come under scrutiny in Pattaya on social media and blamed for many major accidents, including one that killed a Russian tourist in Jomtien earlier this year by allegedly speeding young foreign racers which caused a local crackdown.
Source: The Bangkok Post