JPJ mulling best approach to tackle 'basikal lajak' menace

KUALA LUMPUR: The Road Transport Department (JPJ) is studying ways to address the menace of "basikal lajak" (modified bicycles) riders.

Its director general Datuk Seri Shaharuddin Khalid said the department had authority to evaluate the issue under the Road Traffic Rules 1959.

"For example, we look at the issue as bicycles on the road in general, which includes basikal lajak," he told reporters after attending an traffic operations in Bangsar here on Thursday (Oct 31).

He said they would look at the technical aspects of the issue.

"Based on the rules, these bicycles must be equipped with lights, brakes, horn or bells, and must use appropriate tires," he said, adding that riders must also be escorted when on the road and must ride courteously and not in a reckless manner.

He said they were now looking at what approach to take in handling the situation before it gets out of control.

"We are currently using the advocacy approach until we decide on our next course of action.

"This is to maintain the peace on the road," he said, adding that while they had the authority to take strict action against these users, they wanted to be absolutely certain they were taking the best course of action.

Modified bicycles attracted attention again following a recent court decision to acquit and discharge a sale promoter charged with reckless driving in a 3.30am road accident in which eight teenage cyclists were killed in 2017.

In addition, three videos are making the rounds on social media, including one in Ampang, and one on the Lekas Highway showing the reckless behaviour of these Mat Lajaks (reckless cyclists).

The video taken in Tasek Tambahan, Ampang ended with one of the youths falling off his bicycle and ending up with wounds on his knees and arms. Four youths were later picked up by police in connection with the case.

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