Malaysia Recorded an Average of 7,000 Road Accident Deaths Annually and 18 Daily

25 Jul 2014
GEORGE TOWN: Traffic law enforcement should not be a seasonal ritual to coincide with festivals, like the current Ops Selamat that coincides with next week’s Hari Raya celebrations.
“It should be strictly enforced throughout the year,” said Consumers Association of Penang (CAP) president SM Mohamed Idris at a press conference in his office here today.
“Lax traffic law enforcement is one of the reasons why Malaysia was ranked 20th globally, by World Health Organisation(WHO), for road deaths in 2011,” he said.
“Malaysia recorded an average of 7,000 road accident deaths annually and 18 daily.”
He added that according to the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS), the numbers will increase to 29 deaths daily by 2020.
On average, Malaysia had about 24 deaths per 100,000 population and in 2012 Malaysia had an annual 2.98% increase in the number of road accidents.
“Road accidents costs the nation an average of RM9 billion annually due to losses of among others, human resources, legal processes and damages to the infrastructure,” said Idris.
In an attempt to cut the annual losses, CAP put forward a proposal covering pro-active steps to be taken by the transport authorities for traffic law enforcement.
“And most importantly, a requirement for road safety,” he said.
The CAP proposal included:
Revamping transportation habits to reduce private vehicles on the road and the risk of road users to road crashes by migrating them to public transport usage, especially buses.
A special investigation unit to be set up under the Prime Minister’s Department to curb corruption in transport system implementation and enforcement. The unit should cover traffic offences, vehicle road worthiness, overloading, driver testing, licensing irregularities and vehicle inspections.
Better technological systems should be developed to inhibit corruption.
Invest in resources to increase year round enforcement of traffic laws instead of concentrating on seasonal campaigns.
Implement the Automated Enforcement System (AES) after transparent consultation and feedback from the public. An independent panel should be set up to design the implementation.
AES will create a higher rate of perception of being caught and deter driving recklessness on the roads.
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