Rear Seat Belts Now Compulsory

KUCHING: The Transport Ministry has confirmed that it will be compulsory to use rear seat belts from Jan 1. The grace period will not be extended.

Warning the public not to give any more excuses, Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Seri Lajim Ukin said offenders would be issued summonses.

Lajim said enforcement agencies, such as the Road Transport Department and police, would start issuing warning notices to back-seat passengers who did not buckle up, from Dec 5.

“But from Jan 1, they will face a RM300 compound if they are caught,” he said, after launching the Sarawak leg of the nationwide campaign on the use of rear seat belts.

Lajim said campaigns to promote awareness of the compulsory use of the rear seat belt had been going on for a few years. As such, there was no reason for the ministry to extend the grace period.He said the ministry had spent RM40 million on the awareness campaign last year and another RM45 million this year.

“We shall (NOT We will) allocate another RM45 million for next year’s campaign.”

When told that many motorists in the rural areas of Sarawak and Sabah might not be aware of the ruling as the ongoing campaigns were based in major towns, Lajim said RTD, in collaboration with other agencies, would be conducting aggressive campaigns in the rural areas next year.

“We’ll also make use of the elected representatives to inform those in rural areas about the ruling.”

Lajim said older vehicles were exempted from the ruling.

“Only vehicles manufactured from 1995 onwards are covered by the regulations.”

He explained that in the case of older vehicles, only the front-seat passengers and drivers were required to use safety belts.

He said the proposed Public Transport Commission would take over the functions of 13 agencies responsible for issuing public transport permits.

He said the commission was expected to take off in June or July next year.

“It will be a one-stop centre to coordinate the operations of tourist coaches, taxis, public buses, riverine tranport system, as well as the issuance of permits.”

[Source : NST Online]
Rear Seat Belts Now Compulsory

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