Post sensitization, both drivers and pedestrians will be penalized if found violating the zebra crossing rule

Traffic: Drivers, who do not give way to pedestrians on zebra crossings, will be fined, the Royal Bhutan Police (RBP) has announced.

But first, RBP will sensitize drivers and pedestrians on zebra crossing and pedestrian safety, which begins on November 5.

Chief of Police Brigadier Kipchu Namgyal, yesterday briefed over 1,000 taxi drivers in the capital on the importance of pedestrians’ right of way.

According to Road Safety and Transport Authority’s (RSTA) rules and regulations, a fine of Nu 550 will be imposed on drivers who violate the rule.

However, the police chief said that a revision of the fine amount is underway since the existing fine was found to be high compared to the offence.

“After enough sensitization is done, pedestrians will also be fined if they are found crossing the road from anywhere they like,” Brigadier Kipchu Namgyal said.

The police chief also informed the drivers that there will be strict monitoring and checking on the roads for next few days for security reasons. The drug crackdown operation will also continue and taxi drivers are to report to police if they find any passenger and their baggage suspicious.

He also cautioned the taxi drivers of the amended Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Substance Abuse Act (NDPSSA) 2015 and explained that the Act comes with strict penalties on smugglers.

“People caught carrying more than 10 tablets or capsules is a non-compoundable offence of felony,” he said.

If taxi drivers are found possessing controlled substances or accompanying smugglers, apart from the penalties, their professional driving licence will also be cancelled and the taxi will be converted to a private vehicle.

Thimphu thromde and the RBP will soon introduce queue system for passengers of city buses by constructing railings in designated city bus parking.

Brigadier Kipchu Namgyal said that while he appreciates the taxi drivers’ cooperation, there are those who do not follow the pick and drop system introduced along the expressway and who violate traffic rules. He requested the drivers to abide by the law.

The RBP will introduce a reward system and reward drivers who best follows traffic rules.

Dechen Tshomo