PLUS Malaysia has teamed up with the Road Transport Department (JPJ) for the opening of the first Highway Monitoring Centre by the department’s Highway Enforcement Unit (UPLR), located at the old Jelapang Toll Plaza supervision building at KM 268 along the North-South Expressway near Ipoh.

The opening of the Highway Monitoring Centre at a strategic location on the North-South Expressway provides quicker access to the highway for the managing of highway incidents and to improve safety, said PLUS chief operating officer Zakaria Ahmad Zabidi.

The centre commenced operations on July 1 this year, and it also regulates all UPLR activities at four major enforcement zones. Refurbishment work at the Jelapang centre was completed in 2019, and it features a control room, meeting room, JPJ personnel workstation, officer room, investigation room, prayer room, restrooms and covered parking spaces.

Prior to this, PLUS and JPJ had also opened three other highway enforcement stations at PLUS rest and service areas in R&R Dengkil (southbound), R&R Gunung Semanggol (southbound) and R&R Pagoh (southbound) in stages from 2018, the highway operator said.

“PLUS continuously explores new approaches and ideas to improve safety on our highways to help our customers enjoy safer and more convenient travel. Apart from focusing on engineering and education aspects through road safety advocacy programmes, we also look at law enforcement aspects by collaborating with enforcement agencies such as the JPJ to improve safety on the highways,” Zakaria said at the opening.

Meanwhile, the presence of JPJ enforcement officers on the highway is crucial in addressing issues relating to heavy vehicles, such as the use of low-quality retreaded tyres, overloading, improperly secured payloads and the like, said Zakaria.

“Based on our data, most of the obstacles found on the highway which consist of tyre fragments, wood, iron scraps or debris and many more originated from heavy vehicles, pose a threat to our customers,” he added.

Also at the opening ceremony was the signing of a memorandum of understanding for the establishing of a strategic collaboration involving operations and enforcement in order to improve safety on PLUS highways.