Traffic accident is still a serious threat, claiming numerous lives in Cambodia , said an official from the Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

Toch Chan Kosal, Secretary of State at the Ministry, said there were over 21,500 traffic accidents in the country last year, up 4 percent over the previous year.

The number of deaths by traffic accidents ranks second, only after that by HIV/AIDS, the official said, adding that about 1,700 people died and 7,000 others were injured in traffic accidents in the country last year.

According to him, the increasing figures are attributed to low awareness of a part of the local population who have not abided by traffic rules such as driving at a higher speed than allowed or driving when being drunk.

It is estimated that the Cambodian economy has lost more than 250 million USD in property and treatment cost for the traffic accident victims./.