Roads are not play­grounds for chil­dren

New Straits Times - - Letters -

MARCH 26, 2017 THE is­sue of un­der­age road users is not new. We hear about it when­ever the au­thor­i­ties con­duct road­blocks and en­force­ment.

Dur­ing week­ends or school hol­i­days, there is a grow­ing con­cern that un­der­age chil­dren with­out valid driv­ing li­cences are driv­ing ve­hi­cles.

Many do not wear hel­mets or buckle up.

Our law is clear on this, with Sec­tion 39 (1) of the Road Trans­port Act 1987 (Act 333) stat­ing that no per­son un­der 16 shall drive a mo­tor ve­hi­cle on a road.

Sub­sec­tion (2) of the same sec­tion stip­u­lates that “no per­son un­der 17 years of age shall drive a mo­tor ve­hi­cle other than a mo­tor­cy­cle or an in­valid car­riage on a road”.

Sub­sec­tion (3) of the same act states that “no per­son un­der 21 years of age shall drive a trac­tor heavy, trac­tor light, mo­bile ma­chin­ery heavy, mo­bile ma­chin­ery light, mo­tor car, heavy or pub­lic ser­vice ve­hi­cle on road”.

But, only through strict en­force­ment of the law can we deal with this is­sue.

Par­ents and guardians need to play their roles as well, as le­gal ac­tion can be taken against them for fail­ing to su­per­vise their chil­dren with­out a driv­ing li­cence from us­ing ve­hi­cles that be­long to them.

This is men­tioned un­der Sec­tion 39 (5) of the act: “Any per­son who drives, or causes or per­mits any per­son to drive, a mo­tor ve­hi­cle in con­tra­ven­tion of this sec­tion shall be guilty of an of­fence and shall, on con­vic­tion, be li­able to a fine not ex­ceed­ing RM2,000 or to im­pris­on­ment for a term not ex­ceed­ing six months or to both”.

Roads are not play­grounds for chil­dren. Ac­tiv­i­ties by chil­dren on roads — on bi­cy­cles, skate­boards, rollerblades, or walk­ing — should be su­per­vised by adults.

DR MUZAFFAR SYAH MALLOW, Univer­siti Sains Is­lam Malaysia, Ni­lai, Ne­gri Sem­bi­lan

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