The National Police on Friday ordered its provincial counterparts to inspect all international driver’s licenses and strengthen the process to obtain a Cambodian license in a bid to curb the rate of traffic-related accidents involving foreign drivers.
General Him Yan, deputy national police chief, said on Friday during a traffic meeting with provincial officials that inspections are necessary in order to reduce traffic accidents caused by foreigners unaware of Cambodian traffic laws.
The statement came after recent traffic reports showed that accidents involving foreigners in Sihanoukville have increased.
“From now on, foreign drivers must obtain both a license from their home country and an international driver’s license, and they will also need a Cambodian driver’s license,” Gen Yan said. “In case the police could not verify information on the driver, respective embassies will be contacted for assistance.”
He added that by law, an international license is not fully recognised in Cambodia and a foreign driver needs a local license.
Gen Him Yan noted that only about a dozen foreign diplomats have obtained a Cambodian driver’s license.
In May, Preah Sihanouk provincial traffic police arrested 23 Chinese nationals for driving without a license.
Major General Chuon Narin, Preah Sihanouk chief of police who attended the traffic meeting, said yesterday that the drivers did not respect Cambodian traffic laws and were handed fines.
Maj Gen Narin added that the situation is getting better as there are less traffic accidents in the province.
“It’s not just foreigners, but also Cambodian drivers who do not obtain proper or valid driver’s licenses,” he said. “They have been penalised for what they have done and I would not discriminate against foreign drivers because Cambodians also cause traffic problems in Sihanoukville.”