Thailand’s new penalty point system for driving offences is now in effect

File photo.

A new point system for motorists goes into effect on January 9, but police say they will prioritize encouraging awareness for the general public to understand these regulations before they are fully enforced.

According to Highway Police Division commander Maj-General Ekkarat Limsangkat, the new point system was adopted to improve traffic law compliance, reduce accidents and improve road safety.

Each motorist will begin with a total of 12 points. Points will be deducted for violations of traffic laws, with the most serious offenses resulting in the largest deductions. A driver’s license will be suspended if all 12 points are lost and their license will be revoked if they receive three suspensions within three years.

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Offenses such as speeding, not wearing a helmet while riding a motorcycle, or not wearing a seatbelt will result in a one-point reduction. Fleeing the scene of an accident will result in a three-point penalty, while drunk driving will deduct four points from the offender.

Gen Ekkara said the system will be applied to every driver, but assures that these offenders will have a chance to reform depending on the situation. While some individuals thought the point deduction for drunk driving was “too little,” he stressed that these violators will also face legal charges under the law which include prison and fines as well.