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Phuket BMW driver to be fined for obstructing ambulance

Phuket BMW driver to be fined for obstructing ambulance

PHUKET: The driver of a BMW who refused to pull over to let an ambulance through in Phuket Town will be summoned to be fined for breach of the Traffic Act, Phuket City Police Chief Col Sarawut Chuprasit has confirmed.

By Eakkapop Thongtub

Friday 29 April 2022, 12:32PM

The move follows a video clip posted online yesterday showing the BMW sedan refusing to move to the left to allow the ambulance through, which was transporting an injured woman to Vachira Phuket Hospital. The ambulance had its warning lights flashing and was sounding its siren.

Worse, while refusing to move out of the way, the driver of the BMW drove down the centre of the road to prevent the ambulance from passing. The driver maintained a slow speed and periodically braked with no reason, as if intentionally attempting to delay the ambulance from proceeding.

The video stirred outrage online, and was quickly shared among many social media sites popular with Phuket residents.

Col Sarawut this morning (Apr 29) confirmed that officers had seen the video posted online.

“We can identify the owner of the vehicle from the licence plates. The owner will be called in to identify the driver at that time so that person can be fined for breach of Sections 76 of the Traffic Act,” he said.

“It is an offence to obstruct an emergency vehicle,” he said.

However, Col Sarawut confirmed that the fine could be no more than B500.

The driver’s behaviour caused deep concern by the Kusoldharm rescue workers who were the medical team in the ambulance.

“We urge all people to make way for ambulances. You never know if we are transporting a person with serious injuries, where a fraction of a minute might mean the difference between life and death,” said Anit Jenrob, head of the rescue team.

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christysweet | 01 May 2022 - 18:13:35

Same sort of incident happened in India. Driver was arrested and his car seized. No wonder no one has any respect for Thai laws.

Kamala Pete | 01 May 2022 - 12:10:22

Perhaps ambulances could be fitted with high velocity automatic paint guns for such occasions?  A few hundred rounds of indelible guck would shift them over :) 

christysweet | 01 May 2022 - 11:46:37

A lawyer should step up pro bono and offer to sue this driver on behalf of the patient. 

JohnC | 30 April 2022 - 09:43:20

Ablosute scum should not be allowed to own a vehicle at all and have to walk everywhere, or take a rip off tuk tuk like the poor tourists have to.

Kurt | 30 April 2022 - 08:31:53

The max fine of B500,- is a typical Thai dumb thing. The driver actally committed a crime. ( brought peoples life in danger) The fine should be at least B10,000 - 20,000 like the fines Governor wrote in his last order for 'eateries' that serve a beer after midnight! Seeing matters in the right perspective is a great handicap in Thailand.

Fascinated | 29 April 2022 - 19:16:09

I'll keep an eye out and obstruct HIM if I get the chance. Good job I got the number before the picture was deleted. keep an eye out and show him or her your disdain if you see them. As pointed out below this driver will not even blink or learn from a B500 fine. Maybe a week cleaning out bloody ambulances would be a better life lesson.

Apirath | 29 April 2022 - 15:26:43

Might as well not to fine if it’s just Bt 500. BMW driver should have his license confiscated, pending a psychiatrist’s assessment. Also the driver should have points deducted for the offence

christysweet | 29 April 2022 - 14:00:52

Blacked out windows, AC, radio blaring or on the phone.  Drivers are completely oblivious  to what's around them. The fines should be anchored to income- or value of the vehicle. 500 baht is a lot for a minimum wager worker but nothing for  the wealthy who can afford  such cars. 

Fascinated | 29 April 2022 - 13:21:00

What a complete sphincter. Needs naming and shaming. B500- what a joke. Unfortunately its all to common to see ambos trying to get through traffic and people not moving out of their way. Minibuses have form for it as well.

CaptainJack69 | 29 April 2022 - 12:43:55

Of course this is disgusting behaviour and 500B is a joke. Sort it out Thailand!

A related point though. Why do they drive with their flashing lights on but no siren even when they're not attending an emergency? If they would stop this misleading practice then there'd be no confusion. Lights and siren means emergency, otherwise it's a normal van. Easy.

And it would be a BMW drive...


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