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City Hall ‘ready’ for three-day Water Festival

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
City workers cut grass before the festival. KT/Mai Vireak

Phnom Penh is ready to accommodate the thousands of revellers set to celebrate the Water Festival next month, while authorities have issued a reminder to motorists to drive with care as accidents often rise over the three-day holiday.

City Hall spokesman Met Meas Pheakdey said yesterday that various committees have prepared accommodation for boat racers, as well as places for them to organise and eat.

City Hall has also lined up forces to ensure public security and to ease traffic congestion.

“Phnom Penh is ready to help people for security and for their overall enjoyment,” he said.

City Hall has prepared 466 latrines in 26 major locations, more than 800 sanitation workers, and 2,000 garbage bins, he added.

Six concert and vendor locations near Wat Phnom, Wat Botum Park, Koh Pich, Sokha Hotel and elsewhere have also been prepared, he said.

Mr Pheakdey added that large numbers of visitors make the festival a target for criminals looking to pickpocket people and warned revellers to be wary.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Sar Kheng said on Friday that vehicle traffic will increase sharply over the festival, from November 2 to 4, leading to the possibility of more accidents.

“It should be noted that in the third quarter of 2017, 77 percent of traffic casualties were young people, 66 percent of whom were not wearing helmets,” he said.

Mr Kheng appealed to motorists to obey traffic laws and wear helmets during the festival.

During the Water Festival last year, there were 55 traffic accidents, causing 14 deaths, 50 injuries and damaged property.

Mr Kheng noted most were caused by speeding, not obeying the right of way, dangerous overtaking of vehicles and drunk driving.

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