Traffic accidents in Taiwan involve 5,000 foreigners per year

Danger largest during first year after arrival of foreigners

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An average of 5,000 foreign citizens per year are involved in traffic accidents in Taiwan

An average of 5,000 foreign citizens per year are involved in traffic accidents in Taiwan (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – An average of 5,000 foreigners become involved in traffic accidents per year, and the trend is rising, reports said Friday (June 28).

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmaker Cheng Pao-ching (鄭寶清) and a human rights organization for new immigrants presented data showing that in the period from 2014 and 2018, foreign citizens became involved in a total of 24,526 accidents which caused 110 deaths and injured 26,891 people, the Central News Agency reported.

Cheng called on the Ministry of Transportation to look for a remedy and to improve the traffic situation to benefit foreign students, visitors and new immigrants.

A professor who had been counseling new foreign students for eight years, told Cheng’s hearing that nearly each semester, she had witnessed an accident, usually involving a student from overseas being hit by a car while out walking or cycling.

While in most instances, the student was proven right, he would still need time for his health to recover, while there was also a psychological factor.

The accidents often happened during the students’ first year in Taiwan, when their mastery of the Chinese language was still limited.

The Ministry of Transportation was asked to take the needs of foreign citizens into account while also strengthening research into the issue of accidents involving foreigners in order to provide better data, CNA reported.

Ministry officials promised they would publish data on a regular basis to spot trends and analyze them to respond to the traffic needs of foreign residents.