Crash accident collision

Last week, it was reported that an independent audit will be carried out on the East Coast Expressway 2 (LPT2), where 85 deaths and 1,991 accidents have been reported since its opening in 2011. The safety audit will determine the highway’s roadworthiness and dictate the necessary repair works that need be done.

Now, the first report from a team of evaluators has been released, following several site visits to blackspot areas of LPT2 since last week. The team is comprised of the Malaysian Highway Authority (LLM), Terengganu Public Works Department (PWD) and road reconstruction unit (RCU) from the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (Miros).

According to The Sun, the team detected slight soil erosion due to sedimentation problems, originating from an unstable base due to peat soil conditions. A road engineer from the team stated that, “these erosion problems compromise driving safety, more so if road users exceed the speed limit.”

The evaluators will look into the level of soil stabilisation on LPT2 in order to determine if the highway could bear the weight of the pavement, as well as the constantly changing traffic load. Unstable soil and water retention on the road surface after a heavy downpour were also noted in crash-prone areas of the highway.

Vibrations of the road pavement will also be measured by the team, according to the road engineer. “If vibrations are too rigorous, the road pavement must be grinded to provide a smooth surface,” he said. Aside from the suggested repair works, additional signage will be installed along the highway to remind users to adhere to the speed limits.

Human factor was touted as the reason behind 70% out of 339 accident cases that occurred on LPT2 between Feb 1 and June 2, according to a statement by LLM director-general Datuk Ismail Md Salleh stated in June.

On October 20, Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof instructed the Public Works Department (JKR) to appoint an independent assessor to assess the expressway’s road surface to see if its grip index adhered to specification.