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Department of Highways prepares for Songkran traffic

Highway officials have been told to ensure that traffic signs, lighting and related equipment function properly to prepare for a massive surge in motorists travelling to their hometowns during the Songkran holidays from April 13 to 17.

Sarawut Songwilai, director-general of the Department of Highways, said on Thursday that “From April 11 to 17, highway police will establish checkpoints at 201 locations on highways nationwide to enforce traffic discipline and provide roadside assistance to motorists.”

“Meanwhile, the department will make sure that all 581 highway district offices nationwide offer clean bathrooms for passing motorists, strictly following Covid-19 preventive measures, while officials will be on standby to provide information regarding routes and traffic conditions, as well as free hand sanitiser.”

All 75 weight stations and truck stops under the department will also be open 24/7 during the Songkran holidays to make sure that no truck uses road shoulders as parking space, which can potentially cause traffic congestion.

Department of Highways prepares for Songkran traffic

On March 29, the Cabinet showed the green light to a proposal by the Ministry of Transport to waive toll fee on Motorway No. 7 (Bangkok – Chonburi – Pattaya) and Motorway No. 9 (Bang Pa-in - Bang Phli and Phra Pra Daeng - Bang Khun Tian) during the seven days of the Songkran Festival. Motorists can drive past any checkpoints on both motorways free of charge from midnight of April 12 until midnight of April 18.

The Department of Highways will also waive toll fee on Motorway No. 6 (Bang Pa-in – Nakhon Ratchasima) from Pak Chong checkpoint to Sikhiu checkpoint, totaling 35.75km from April 11 to 17. The section will open only for one-way traffic to facilitate the smooth flow of vehicles.

From April 11 to 14, it will open for traffic heading to Nakhon Ratchasima province, and from April 15 to 18, it will be accessible to motorists travelling to Bang Pa-in.

Published : April 07, 2022