In a bid to curb the menace of illegal motorcycle racing, the government is planning to amend the Road Transport Act 1987 to raise the punishment for offences involving the modification of motorcycle engines and exhausts, increasing the fines for these from the RM300 at present to RM10,000.

Additionally, those participating in illegal motorcycle racing are set to face a jail term if found guilty in court, while irresponsible parents who allow their children to modify their motorcycles for illegal racing, as well as workshop owners who carry out the task, will also be penalised.

According to transport ministry secretary-general Datuk Isham Ishak, such action was needed to stamp out the problem, as the New Straits Times reports. He said that illegal racing should be defined more broadly than just participation in such races, and include modifying exhaust pipes and engines to ride dangerously or perform dangerous stunts on the road.

“It is necessary to raise the fines because many youngsters blatantly break the law and join motorcycle races nowadays. They can afford to pay the RM300 fine, and that is why we propose to push the penalty to RM10,000 to raise awareness about the dangers of illegal racing,” he said.

He added that parents who allow their children to use bikes for illegal racing and workshop owners who modify the bikes will also be slapped with compounds.

Isham said that the proposed amendments are set to be tabled in parliament in the third quarter of next year. Currently, it was at the “good regulatory practice” stage, involving a series of engagements and consultations with stakeholders.

He said that this was being done because the ministry wanted to ensure that the law could be implemented effectively after taking into account the views of all parties. “We do not want to make a U-turn after introducing the new regulations. We want them to be implemented effectively with the support of a majority of stakeholders,” he explained.

He added that while effective enforcement was crucial to curbing road accidents that involved motorcycles, raising the penalties would provide a further avenue to help tackle the issue.