COMMENT: While the government may have floundered and corrupted its implementation, I’m a huge supporter of the automated enforcement system (AES) and here’s why.
Malaysians are horrible, rude, abrasive and unruly drivers. And I seriously mean to lump everyone together on this one because all of us, including myself, have erred at one time or another.
Personally, I am most guilty in not obeying the speed limit in housing areas, which is stuck at 60km/hour. You could put speed bumps throughout the stretch of roads in Shah Alam and I’d still insist on doing 80 to the last minute.
And for this, I welcome the speeding tickets and pay them off.
That said, the AES should not only be used against speed demons but be extended for other offences on the road as well.
I’d love to see all motorists changing lanes without signalling getting a summons.
Is it really so hard to put on your blinkers to tell everyone where you’re going? Are you being tailed by a stalker, the paparazzi, the special branch or a pontianak on a Thursday night?
Just what is your rationale for being unable to just shift the left or right stick on your steering wheel either up or down?
Is either of your hands too busy handling a phone and asking for directions? Pull over to do that! Heck, pull over for any call if you don’t have a hands free kit.
Perhaps a RM150 ticket would help people to be courteous.
How about a RM300 ticket for those who think lining up in a traffic jam warrants the use of the emergency lane or the bus lane?
I honestly believe that unless your wife’s or life partner’s water bag broke and placenta is staining your strawberry bolster you bought in Cameron Highlands, you do not have an emergency. What you have is a case of impatience and rudeness.
However, perhaps exemptions can be made for the pontianak excuse if it is caught on camera.
Similarly, there’s a reason for buses and taxis to have a lane all to themselves. Why not stick them only to that lane with the threat of a summons?
While we’re on the case of traffic jams, why not use the AES against errant truckers who insist on using the highways during the peak periods instead of placing Road Transport Department and police personnel manning the highways telling them to pull over?
And what about those trucks which are overloaded and still plying the roads?
And as someone who grew up in Shah Alam, I would love to see the AES at every roundabout to ensure people use the right lanes.
And to ensure no favourites, the AES should also be placed along the roads of every mosque, church and temple.
There is no constitutional right allowing you to be an a-hole by parking on the street because you are too lazy to walk from proper parking spaces or arrived too late to find proper parking.
In fact, some local councils have already installed CCTVs for security measures. Why not upgrade these and get in on the fun?
Is it not in the interest of security to stop people from errantly parking to the point of blocking entire roads?
Think about it.
And of course, I cannot stress this more, motorcycles should not be exempted from such laws.
The AES needs to be implemented because we have way too many rude, dumb, insensitive, uncaring, selfish drivers who somehow managed to get a licence.
And since former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is so keen to remind us that Malays forget easily, perhaps the AES summonses can be a constant reminder for us Malays to drive properly.
And furthermore, perhaps the burden of paying so many summonses would help make cars not feasible and push people to take the public transport.
The AES summones were supposed to have been enforced before the state and federal governments put the brakes on the system.
Currently stuck at 14 cameras out of more than 800 planned, the AES has seen the issuance of more than 600,000 summonses.
That’s more than RM180 million the government did not collect because of some law technicalities which I personally hope will be settled by the end of this year.
Perhaps the money can be invested directly into better public transport systems so people won’t have to drive around like maniacs.
Now that the government has in fact taken full control of the AES, get ready to pay through your nose.
And sincerely, I hope those in Parliament, their spouses and family members do not ask for favours by having their records deleted from the system.
And if you can’t pay for the summons, the increasing price of petrol and even the toll hikes?