THE Penang Road Safety Department (JKJR) is laun-ching a special operation to nab car passengers who are still not buckling up their rear safety belts despite the presence of various campaigns to raise awareness about it.
The operation will be done every Friday until further notice and its location will change all over the state.
State JKJR director S. Jegan said rear passengers found not wearing the compulsory safety belts would be fined RM300 each and if they were aged below 17, the summons would be issued to the driver instead.
“Drivers will have to pay if their rear passengers are just children or teenagers under the age of 17,” Jegan said.
He said a study by the Malay-sian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS) indicated that the number of rear passengers wearing the belts dropped from 48% last year to 20% this year within the same period between January and March.
Some of those caught claimed that the order on wearing rear seat belts was revoked this year, he said.
“It is compulsory to wear them at all times,” said Jegan at a road safety advocacy campaign, held at the Sungai Dua toll plaza on Friday.
The campaign was organised by the state JKJR, state Road Transport Department (JPJ), state Road Safety Council and the police.
Jegan also reminded Proton and Perodua car owners that they only had until next month to install the rear seat belts for models manufactured before 1995.
The installation is free at the respective service centres of the two car makers.
Jegan also warned students not to drive to school without licenses as JPJ officers would be out to nab them.
Based on studies by MIROS, the age group of between 16 and 28 had the highest number of fatality rates in the country.
The rear safety belt rule was enforced nationwide last year.