29 Feb Busy Roads, Night Driving on Koh Phangan
The past few months from the start of peak season which is mid-December right up to late March the roads are extremely busy. The busiest time of the year for Koh Phangan and all of Thailand. Foreigners from all over the world visit Thailand for their holidays. Which means there are a lot of new riders and car drivers on the road. Without a doubt the roads become busy and people use the roads differently and can cause bad accidents.
Driving at night on Koh Phangan
Riding a scooter at night
Most of the Island does not have street lamps along the roads. So some roads are very dark and are to be taken with caution. Road markers, white lines, are only on a few of the new roads on the Island. Some roads, for example, Thong Sala to Srithanu, coast road has no line indicators for the middle and sides of the roads. So if your eyesight at night is not good, ride with extreme caution, it is easy to get too close to the middle of the road and easier to go off the road.
Driving a car at night
The same applies to a car as a scooter rider when riding at night, only in a car you have a windscreen, and the protection of the car body around you. Plus you have seat belts! Although today’s modern cars and scooters have led lights they are very bright, most riders either don’t know or forget they have the main beam, which gets left on. This for a car driver can be blinding, especially if your windscreen has dirt or grease on it. Flashing your lights seems to do no good because most people don’t even know they have a button to adjust the scooter lights main beam. At night being blinded by oncoming traffic on some of the small dark roads can lead to a nasty visit of the road.
Driving at night is also a time for other riders to have had a few drinks! The drink laws are not very strong on the Island. You are advised to use common sense, don’t drink and drive, or ride! So again drive with caution.
Another common thing on the road is older scooters or cars having broken lights. Even seen some bikes with no lights. You may have seen fishermen with old bikes and a headlamp on their heads. This is common on the roads, again the lack of traffic police, people get away with it.
Scooter riders wear your helmet all the time you are riding. New statistics show that scooter and motorbike accidents lead to a 33% chance of damaging your head. See more about wearing a helmet