Bangkok man earns cash bounty by ratting out sidewalk riders

A Twitter user shows off his THB1,000 reward (left) Motorbike racer Scott Redding bewildered by motorcyclists who unapologetically ride on the sidewalks (right) Images:  PraChaya_note/ Twitter and Instagram/ reddingpower
A Twitter user shows off his THB1,000 reward (left) Motorbike racer Scott Redding bewildered by motorcyclists who unapologetically ride on the sidewalks (right) Images: PraChaya_note/ Twitter and Instagram/ reddingpower

A Thai man took the law into his own hands in the exchange for sweet, sweet cash paid this week for tipping the cops off to motorcyclists riding on the sidewalk.

Proving that a much-mocked bounty put out on sidewalk scofflaws was a reality, the dude going by PraChaya_note on Twitter shared photos of the two purple beauties he said were given as a reward for reporting two bikers violating traffic laws. The total prize? THB1,000 (US$32).

“I got THB500 per offender,” he tweeted, helpfully explaining that any citizen can easily sign up via the department’s website to provide their own tips. “You can also follow your tip’s processing.”

The system, hosted by the City Law Enforcement department, is only available for tips in Bangkok for now. 

An attempt to sign up found the registration process is very simple and straightforward, but, fair warning, it is exclusively in Thai and requires a national ID number. 

Tipsters can report anyone disrupting the capital’s cleanliness and order, so start narcing out your rude neighbors and obnoxious friends immediately.

Reportable actions include riding motorbikes on sidewalks, throwing garbage into waterways or setting up stalls in restricted areas. 

In order to successfully provide a tip, users must provide the date, time, location and description (including license plates, vehicle models, etc.) and photographic evidence of each incident. If the offender was a motorcycle taxi operator, their vest and number must be visible.

Once officials receive the tip, they will send the offender a letter demanding a fine, which is basically the equivalent of a ticket. Do these carry the force of law? Unsure. And tipsters will only receive their rewards once the offenders pay up. Police will contact the tipster when their reward is ready for collection.

Launched in 2017, the bounty program offers half of the fine as a reward. Fines can run up to THB5,000.  Late last year, City Hall doubled the base fine to THB1,000 after reporting the number of illegal sidewalk riders hadn’t changed despite collecting THB3 million (US$97,000) in fines.

Reactions to the bounty were generally positive, with some regarding the tip line as a creative way to make some dough.

“Great! What a great way to earn money on the side and do something productive with your spare time,” Twitter user Mybelovedpalit wrote Wednesday morning. Others, who said they submitted tips and heard nothing back, doubted the efficiency of the system. 

“I reported to them way back on October 6 and still haven’t heard back. … Stay patient everyone!” user Leoxlay04 wrote Tuesday. 

PraChaya_note suggested to stay patient because “the tip will still yield fruit faster than starting a deposit account.”

Tips can also be submitted by emailing citylaw_bma@hotmail.com, calling 024-656-644 or online. Happy surveilling! 

Related Stories:

‘No f**ks given’: British MotoGP racer Scott Redding bashes Bangkok motorcyclists for riding on sidewalk (Video)

Bangkok to enforce maximum fine of THB1,000 for motorcyclists who ride on sidewalk

Delivery man charged for knocking schoolgirl down while riding on Bangkok sidewalk

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