Hari Raya is just around the corner and most will travel back to hometown this festive season, and ensuring a safe journey ensuring you and your vehicle is in good condition to complete the journey to and fro. Hong Leong Yamaha Motor Sdn Bhd and Malaysian Motorcycle & Scooter Dealers Association (MMSDA) for the 19th Yamaha Balik Kampung Road Safety Campaign 2017, ensuring first 500 bikes regardless of brand and model will get a 7 point check on their motorcycle and after the 5 point check the motorcyclist can exchange his/hers old helmet for a new open face helmet sponsored by and a bright yellow raincoat. Aeon Credit Service (M) Bhd and KHI Helmets Industries (M) Sdn Bhd each provided 500 and 300 SIRIM approved helmets for a one-to-one replacement programme for damaged and aged helmets, conducted at various locations on a first-come-first-served basis. The first location is Bentong with Wednesday will be at Sunway and on Thursday will be at Seremban.
Supporting this road safety campaign included Fung Keong Rubber Manufactory (M) Sdn Bhd (FKR Tyre) and NGK Spark Plugs Malaysia Bhd, with a number of technical representatives on hand to inspect and advise on tyre and spark plug conditions. During the launch speech by Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai added new offences under the system include using cellphones while driving, not wearing safety belts, drink driving, using the emergency lane, driving under the influence of narcotics and overloading by commercial vehicles.
“As of now, the demerit system only applies to speeding and beating the red light.
“These new offences will be included once the upgrading of JPJ’s MySIKAP system is complete,”
He also revealed that seven new Automated Enforcement System (AES) cameras to catch speedsters had been installed, four along the North-South Expressway (NSE) – 146.8km and 151.4km mark near Pagoh (Johor), 299.9km mark near Kampar (Perak), and 96.3km mark near Kuala Muda (Kedah).
The remaining three are at the 17km mark of the Gua Musang-Kuala Krai highway, as well as the 256.1km and 288.6km mark of the East Coast Expressway Phase 2.
“Our main aim is not to penalise motorists, but get them to slow down to ensure their safety. We want to save lives,” said Liow.
At the same time, he said the mi¬¬nistry would study the possibility of offering incentives to conscientious drivers in the form of awards or vehicle insurance premium rebates.
Liow expressed concern over the high number of speeding and traffic light offences recorded by AES cameras.
In a two-month period from April 15 to June 18, 77,242 offences were recorded, 89% (68,830) of them for speeding, with Liow adding that the 375.9km mark of the NSE near Slim River, Perak, was a speeding “hotspot”.
Liow stressed that the 7,152 road fatalities last year were way too high for Malaysia, which has a po-pulation of around 31 million.
“A majority of those killed (62.7%) were motorcyclists. We need to internalise road safety as a part of our culture as accidents lower the productivity of the country, and our calculations show we lose about RM9bil in productivity due to road accidents,” he said.
HLYM managing director Datuk Jim Khor and MMSDA chairman Wee Hong gave out helmets and safety vests to motorcyclists.