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AIT’S TARC Center Hosts the first Thailand Road Safety Forum

13 Mar 2024
School of Engineering and Technology

By Alistina Shrestha

13 March 2024: The Thailand Accident and Research Center (TARC) in the AIT School of Engineering and Technology (SET) hosted the inaugural Thailand Road Traffic Safety Forum with Mr. Montri Dechasakulsom, Deputy Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Transport, presiding over the opening. Executives from the Ministries of Public Health, Transport, and other pertinent government agencies and organizations, as well as media members, attended the event at the Okura Prestige Bangkok Hotel.

To reduce fatalities, injuries, and financial losses in Thailand, the Ministry of Transport launched a study on road accidents with support from the World Bank. This endeavor led to the formulation of the Thailand Road Safety Master Plan, identifying crucial challenges in implementing preventive, corrective, and mitigative measures. Collaborating entities such as the Department of Highways, Volvo Car Cooperation in Sweden, and the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) facilitated the establishment of TARC.

Founded on February 16, 2003, TARC focuses on advancing knowledge about road accident research in Thailand. Its core objectives encompass continuous research, analysis, and assessment of accident causes and injuries, providing academic solutions for road accident mitigation, fostering collaboration, enhancing the capacities of road safety agencies, and facilitating the transfer of research findings into practice. Noteworthy projects include motorcycle accident investigations (2016–2023) and road safety inspections on Kanchanaphisek Road and Chalong Rat Expressway.

The forum aimed to deepen understanding of the current and future road accident situations in Thailand, spotlighting data analysis, law enforcement, and road safety policies. Distinguished speakers led presentations and discussions at the event Dr. Chakree Bamrungwong, Advisor at Land Transport Economics, Ministry of Transport, discussed the “Current Status of Traffic Accidents in Thailand and Future Trends.” Police General Surachate Hakparn, Deputy Commissioner-General of the Royal Thai Police, addressed “National Road Crash Data and Related Law Enforcement Efficiency.” Dr. Piyapong Jiwattanakulpaisarn, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Highways, presented on the “Implementation of Evidence-Based Countermeasures for Improving Traffic Safety on Highways.” Dr. Sirirat Suwanrit, M.D. The Director of Injury Prevention at the Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health of Thailand, provided insights into the “Development of Public Health Policies based on Crash Data Analysis.”

Prof. Kunnawee Kanitpong

Prof. Kunnawee Kanitpong, Director of TARC and faculty at the Transportation Engineering (TRE) Program in AIT SET, shed light on the “Characteristics of Motorcycle Crashes in Thailand: Evidence from an In-Depth Crash Investigation.” Mr. Atsushi Hagiwara, General Manager, and Mr. Mafuyu Okada, Assistant Manager, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, Japan, discussed the “Importance of Traffic Accident Data Analyses from Vehicle Manufacturer Viewpoint. “Mr. Nicholas Wong, Manager, Technical Service Solutions (South-East Asia), Robert Bosch (South East Asia) Pte. Ltd., shared experiences with “Crash Data Retrieval: Experiences with Event Data Recorder (EDR) in Crash Investigation.”

Following a panel discussion on using in-depth accident investigation data in policy implementation, there was a Q&A session. This initiative represents a significant step to promote cooperation among interested parties in analyzing data from traffic accidents, policy development, and implementing measures to improve traffic safety in Thailand, in line with the country’s vision for injury prevention and sustainable traffic safety.

The Thailand Accident Research Center (TARC) is Thailand’s pioneer road accident research center. It is the national center for collecting scientific information about road crashes. It conducts accident investigation and reconstruction, road safety audits, and research on primary and secondary accident data.