Keeping a close eye on illegal races


Photo: ZHAFARAN NASIB/The Star

KUALA LUMPUR: To ensure the safety of all road users, the police will continue their blitz against illegal racers nationwide, says Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani. Stressing that operations against illegal racers are not seasonal, the nation’s top cop said they were conducted by the Traffic Investigation and Enforcement Department (JSPT) on a weekly basis, especially during weekends.

“Such enforcement operations are led by the respective state and district JSPT chiefs with the goal of nabbing the wrongdoers and ensuring the safety of all road users,” he told The Star yesterday.

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The operations were conducted after the JSPT identified the hotspots for such races, he said.

“Information on the races are obtained through intelligence gathering and from the public as well,” he added.

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One of the main challenges faced by the police was the higher risk posed by the illegal racers, Acryl Sani said.

“They are becoming more brazen not only when carrying out their stunts, but also when they are trying to escape the authorities.

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“In turn, they are endangering not only themselves but the enforcement personnel and other road users as well.

“Despite the danger, the police are committed to safeguarding the safety of the public,” he said.

Recently, the Transport Ministry proposed amendments to Section 42 of the Road Transport Act 1987, which would lead to stiffer penalties for illegal racers.

Action would also be taken against spectators and parents who allow their children under the age of 18 to join illegal racing activities.

On the proposed amendments, Acryl Sani said the Royal Malaysia Police fully supported laws that would be used to effectively curb illegal racing.

“We welcome efforts to amend and improve existing laws aimed at curbing illegal racing,” he said.

“We hope that the amendments proposed by the Transport Ministry will have a positive impact during implementation. We need a holistic legislative approach to seriously curb illegal racing,” Acryl Sani added.

Illegal racing, which mainly involved underaged riders, not only impacted the racers but also their parents and other road users, he said.

Under the proposed amendments, the racers could face a minimum fine of RM5,000 and jail time too.

The current minimum fine is RM300.

Transport Ministry secretary-general Datuk Isham Ishak said that under the proposed amendments, workshop operators who provided motorcycle modification services for illegal racing purposes would also be punished.

He said the amendments would likely be tabled in the first Dewan Rakyat meeting next year.

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