On Vietnamese roads, death didn't take a holiday

By VnExpress   February 1, 2017 | 07:00 pm GMT+7
On Vietnamese roads, death didn't take a holiday
A scene of a traffic accident in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho on January 29, 2017. Photo courtesy Bao Giao Thong

170 people were killed in crashes across the country during the week-long Tet break.

A total of 256 traffic accidents and 170 deaths have been reported since January 26, when Vietnam’s Lunar New Year break began.

These incidents also injured 285 others nationwide, according to local media reports, which cited official data.

Most of them were road crashes but there was one rail incident, in which one person was injured.

In comparison, during the nine-day Tet break last year, 300 people were killed and 380 were injured in 408 traffic accidents.

Traffic accidents remain the biggest single cause of fatalities in Vietnam even as the country has been working to make local roads safer.

On average, there is one death per hour. The country is trying to reduce road traffic fatalities to fewer than 20 per day, or 7,300 per year.

Traffic congestion, inadequate law enforcement, poor driving skills and bad street conditions are often cited as the main reasons for road crashes.

Meanwhile, brawls sent more than 2,200 people to hospital this Tet, according to a report from the Ministry of Health. At least four of the victims were dead, Giao Thong (Transport) newspaper reported earlier this week.

Tet or Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in Vietnam that typically involves a lot of feasts, partying and drinking. Most of the country will go back to work on Thursday.

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