“Passengers found not to be wearing a seat belt will be fined 5,000 baht immediately without exception,” said Asdsathai Rattanadilok Na Phuket, director-general of the Department of Land Transport.
Department officials will conduct random inspections on passengers to urge them to wear seat belts at all times while travelling, he said.
On Tuesday, Mr Asdsathai visited the Mor Chit 2 bus terminal to distribute department stickers detailing the new seat belt law to passengers. He instructed bus and van drivers to inform passengers about the regulation before departure or post stickers in their vehicles.
The department recently issued a new regulation requiring public transport operators to install seat belts for all passenger seats before April 1. Violators face a fine of up to 50,0000 baht and authorities will immediately revoke licences of repeat offenders.
Mr Asdsathai said the department launched an inspection during the Songkran festival and found police had fined the owners of 200 vehicles, mostly public vans and buses, for failing to install the required safety device. Latest checks indicated that only half of the vehicles had been equipped with safety belts. He said authorities would not extend licences for operators failing to comply with the new law.