Police to release statistics on fatal road accidents daily, says Loke

PETALING JAYA: Statistics on fatal road accidents will be made available daily by the police to create awareness on road safety, says Transport Minister Anthony Loke.

He said his ministry, through the Road Transport Department, would be coordinating with the police on making the data available to the public.

“The police will release information about road accident deaths from the previous day.

“We want to make this a policy so that it will be published by all media. We are hoping for the cooperation of all media, inclu­ding the print media, to make these figures public to spread awareness,” added Loke.

Loke also said a similar online platform like the CovidNow website, which provided updates on Covid-19 data, would be used to provide the fatal accident figures.

“During Covid-19, data on deaths was released daily. The reporting must be simi­lar to that format.

“We want to let the people know that road accidents are as dangerous as Covid-19.

“So we must pay attention to traffic safety. We want to change the mindset,” he said during a press conference in Parliament today.

Death traps on the Federal Highway

According to Loke, the matter was decided this morning during a Cabinet committee on traffic congestion and road safety that was chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

“The ministry will also take the initiative to meet all media editors to brief them about the issue and we will try to cooperate with the media,” added Loke.

Loke said last year, there were 6,443 road accident deaths, which translated to an average of 18 deaths daily and was the highest figure in the past five years.

“From this figure, nearly two-thirds of it involved motorcycles, which had 4,448 deaths last year. This is an average of 12 deaths a day and it means that every two hours, there is one fatal accident involving motorcycles,” said Loke.

Loke also said Ahmad Zahid is expected to release a statement on the matter soon.

Separately, Loke said open payment systems will soon be implemented for public transport buses managed by Prasarana.

Open payment systems allow many cashless payment methods, including credit and debit cards.

“As of now, cashless payments are only allowed through Touch n’ Go but we know this is a challenge for both Malaysians and foreign tourists.

“Prasarana has already opened a tender for this, and I have instructed them to prioritise it for buses at the moment.

“It can be done by just installing card readers in the bus,” he said.

Loke also noted that the move was initially for both rail and bus systems.

“From a user’s point of view, foreign tourists may not know where to purchase the Touch n’ Go cards, making it harder.

“Whereas if you use the rail, there are other alternatives such as purchasing tokens,” Loke said, adding that open payment systems could hopefully be implemented across Rapid KL buses by year-end.

On measures to ease traffic congestion, Loke said the committee agreed with a proposal by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) to establish a contra-flow lane from the Sungai Besi toll plaza to the SMART Tunnel.

“Further details will be announced by DBKL as it is under their jurisdiction.

“They will work it out with concessionaires on the operations and timing,” he added.