Holiday traffic accidents kill 760 in Indonesia

August 25, 2012
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JAKARTA, Indonesia – Road accidents during the Muslim holiday of Idul Fitri, when millions of Indonesians travel to their hometowns, resulted in at least 760 deaths and more than 5,000 injuries, local media reported Friday (August 24th).

More than 4,000 accidents occurred since motorists began their journeys a week before Idul Fitri, which fell on Sunday in Indonesia, National Police spokesman Boy Rafli Amar told reporters.

Most of the accidents occurred on Java. Nearly 70% of them involved motorcycles, he said. Often two or three people are on board, including children.

"As we speak, more people are being killed in road accidents," Amar said at a press conference Thursday.

East Java Governor Soekarwo said local officials would monitor motorcycle use as travellers returned home this weekend and might provide motorcyclists with alternate forms of transportation.

"There will surely be evaluation and realignment, especially for holiday-makers traveling by motorcycle. We don't want to see the number of traffic accidents, which has been dominated by motorcycles, rise again," the Antara news agency quoted him as saying.

About 20 million people across the sprawling archipelago took part in the annual exodus to spend Idul Fitri with relatives this year.

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