GEORGE TOWN: Penangites will need to brace themselves for a second wave of influx of holidaymakers into the state this weekend as thousands of motorists are expected to throng Penang island.
State Traffic and Public Order Department chief Supt Zafri Zolkapli said police were anticipating more vehicles from the northern states to enter Penang, resulting in higher traffic volume on highways and major roads.
“Penang will be their main destination to stop before resuming their journey back to Kuala Lumpur or other southern states like Johor for work after spending their week-long school holiday break.
“We anticipated this (increase in vehicles) due to the school holiday and public holiday, and we have traffic police personnel on the ground to control the situation,” he said.
It was reported that many states were seeing a surge in travellers, especially this past weekend, with the start of the first term week-long holiday of the 2022/2023 school session as well as the celebration of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s official birthday on Monday.
In Penang, the past weekend saw most roads filled with out-of-state vehicles as visitors head to the island.
“Major roads in George Town, especially Penang Road, Transfer Road and near the Esplanade were packed with vehicles,” Supt Zafri said.
“Although there were many vehicles in the city, the situation was manageable.
“There are a lot of vehicles, but there was no traffic congestion as the traffic was smooth and under control,” he said.
Supt Zafri advised motorists to be courteous and follow traffic rules at all times to avoid mishaps.
“Motorists should be responsible while on the road and be more careful while driving at accident-prone areas in the city.
“Please do not stop or double park at any major roads in the city and don’t park haphazardly to prevent traffic gridlock,” he said.
Observation by The Star at the North-South Expressway near Seberang Jaya and Juru on the Penang mainland found that although many vehicles were on the road heading both ways, there was no congestion at around midday yesterday.
Earlier, PLUS’ Twitter feed reported that there was a high number of vehicles moving from Prai to the island at 8.56am.
However, PLUS’ Twitter feed reported an accident at 1.34pm at KM163.9 of the North-South Expressway from Jawi to Bandar Baharu, but the accident did not cause any traffic congestion near the area.