13,000 traffic accidents nationwide during the first five months of this year have claimed 4,000 lives and injured more than 14,000 people, Nguyen Hoang Hiep, vice chairman of the National Traffic Safety Committee, told a meeting on June 12.
Honda Civic caught fire in HCM City's An Lac Ward. PM Nguyen Tan Dung requested the Ministry of Public Security to investigate the causes of car and motorcycle fires and explosions. (Photo: VNS)
Despite decreases in the death toll and traffic crashes of 17% and 21%, respectively, over the same period last year, there has been an increase in serious accidents.
Traffic mismanagement and inadequate public awareness are the main reasons behind the huge number of crashes, he added.
Road accidents are common in Vietnam despite the fact that traffic rules and road upgrades have been tightened.
PM urges to find the cause of burnt vehicles
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday, June 13, called on relevant ministries to speed up progress in finding out whether gasoline was the direct cause of recent car and motorbike fires and explosions.
He specifically asked the Ministry of Science and Technology to determine the impact of gasoline on accessories and equipment mounted on cars and motorbikes.
The PM also urged the Ministry of Transport to review the technical standards for car and motorcycle equipment, especially those domestically assembled or manufactured.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade was asked to work with relevant authorities to control the quality of gasoline during the process of import to distribution while strictly punishing fraud, he said.
Dung requested the Ministry of Public Security to investigate the causes of car and motorcycle fires and explosions while drawing up measures to prevent such occurrences.
Last April, agencies took 56 gasoline samples from stations that had supplied the owners of the damaged vehicles.
Test results showed that only one sample failed to meet the oil standard while none contained flammable chemicals such as methanol or acetone. Authorities announced that there was no evidence that gasoline was the direct cause of the subsequent fires or explosions.
A Ministry of Public Security survey showed that more than 320 such cases of fires and explosions occurred nation-wide between 2010 and 2011, with the remaining under investigation.
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