Peer pressure is among the reasons that youths take part in illegal racing activities, as found by Seri Alam police deputy chief Mohd Roslan Mohd Tahir through the three-year research he has conducted on illegal racing, Bernama reported.

A total of 300 mat rempit (illegal motorcycle racers) aged between 16 and 27 years from Johor Bahru, Seri Alam, Kulai, Skudai and Iskandar Puteri were approached and interviewed, according to the report.

“All this while, everyone has been pointing fingers, looking for someone to blame (for mat rempit issues). Some even blame the government, family and society,” Roslan said.

“Through the research, it was found that it is not the fault of the government, the enforcement or the family because they got involved at their own will, and 90% is due to peer pressure,” Roslan told a press conference. These issues can be dealt with if the government, through certain bodies continues to hold programmes such as awareness campaigns, he said.

“[While] the authorities can organise programmes for youths through awareness campaigns, parents also need to play a role in giving advice,” the Seri Alam police deputy chief said.

Illegal motorcycle racing, especially those involving mass crowds have resulted in dire consequences; a large kapchai gathering in Penang last month where street racing also took place ended in a massive incident that claimed three lives from the outset, and two more would succumb to their injuries later on.

Misadventures on two wheels documented to have taken place in the country also involved modified bicycles or basikal lajak, where eight teenagers died in an incident in 2017.