Proposal to impose different speed limits based on engine capacity will complicate enforcement

Press Statement
by John Chung

(Petaling Jaya, Tuesday): The proposal by Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu to impose a lower speed limit for small cars is not the best approach to prevent or reduce road accidents. Instead, such a move may lead to complications in enforcement.

As it is now, heavy vehicles like buses and lorry are already subjected to different speed limits. Having another set of speed limits for cars with different engine capacities will only result in confusion and make the task of enforcement more difficult.

What causes road accidents are carelessness and recklessness on the part of drivers and not necessarily speed or the size of a car. One can drive at a reasonably fast speed but still safely enough as long as one is careful, responsible and considerate to other motorists.

What the government should do is to place greater emphasis on efforts to educate motorists by conducting more safety driving programs and campaigns as the public has rightly pointed out.

At the same time, motorists should be matured enough to know the limit of their cars so as to drive at a speed that is comfortably fast yet safe. Hence, the issue is not so much about speed but responsible driving. What needs to be stressed upon is the difference between driving fast but recklessly and driving fast but carefully and responsibly.

On the proposal to increase the highway speed limit from 110 km/h to 120 km/h or even 130 km/h as some quarters have suggested, the government should sample more public feedback and input from road experts so that a well-informed decision can be taken.


*  John Chung, DAP National Publicity Bureau Assistant Secretary