After taking over the transport minister’s portfolio, Anthony Loke has a full plate of issues to deal with, including that of road safety. Citing figures provided by police, Loke said there were 6,740 fatal accidents on Malaysian roads in 2017, of which 4,348 involved motorcyclists and pillions.

With an overall vehicle population of 28 million, including 13 million two-wheelers, Loke is taking the issue of road safety seriously. Looking at collaborating with the private sector, Loke said the ministry will focus on the road safety agenda despite being informed by the Director-General that the budget was low.

“Road users attitude must change. The attitude and mentality of road users is low and discipline is poor,” said Loke. “we need to cultivate good driving habits and a new culture on Malaysian roads,” he continued.

In line with this, Loke said there is a need to shame road offenders by pointing out their mistakes as well as educating youth, especially from primary level, in proper and safe road behaviour. “There are benefits in investing in road safety awareness, in terms of saving lives lost and preventing permanent injury,” Loke said.

Speaking at the Yamaha Balik Kampung road safety campaign at the Sungai Besi toll plaza, Loke said drivers and riders should focus on safety during the coming holiday season. This includes proper vehicle and safety checks, not driving while drowsy, observing the speed limit and not tail-gating.