Over 100 Injured in Road Accidents in Chin State
21 December 2011: Road accidents across Chin State since Burma’s 2010 elections have claimed more than 40 lives and caused over 120 injuries, according to Chinland Guardian‘s sources.
With the majority occurring in Tedim and Falam townships, about 70 percent of the accidents are connected to passenger-carrying vehicles including jeep and minibuses while motorbike-related mishaps are 30 percent.
The Chin locals have described the ‘wretched’ conditions of roads across Burma’s poorest state and lack of vehicle-related traffic rules in towns as a reason for causing accidents and casualties.
One of the community leaders from Hakha told Chinland Guardian: “We have an increasing number of people using motorbikes and cars but we haven’t got any practical rules for vehicles in place. In addition, the road conditions across the whole state have been neglected for so long and we will still have accidents until these are sorted properly.”
In Hluttaw sessions held in Naypyidaw, Chin MPs raised questions concerning road conditions in Chin State and the urgent need of maintenance and improvement under Burma’s new government, which voices development across the country.
Chin MP Pu Mnai Naing said in the second regular session of the first Amyotha Hluttaw in September that only about 13 out of 117 villages in Kanpetlet Township have access to motor roads, with more than 100 villages relying on foot for travelling.
Last Saturday, a truck tumbled about 500ft down the hillside on the Indo-Burma No. 2 road between Tedim town and Lamzang village, killing a 25-year-old driver assistant, Lian Daih Khai, and injuring its driver.
Another accident early this month happened near Ramthlo village in Falam Township, breaking Roman Catholic Father Paul Kip Thawng’s right leg when his motorbike bumped into a goods-carrying truck on a small zigzag road.
Two bikers, Bawi Lian Thawng, from Congthia village, and Baby, a mother of four from Hriphi, were taken to hospital in Hakha after they got seriously injured in a road accident in Chin-Oo-Si ward near the parliament building of Chin State government on 12 December 2011.
Chin State government has pledged to step up its efforts to improve the road conditions as parts of its development programmes following an 8-million donation by the Indian government in recent months.
Reporting by Thawng Zel Thang