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Speeding main factor in road crashes, says expert

Muhammad Yusry


PETALING JAYA: Managing vehicle speed is the best way to prevent road crashes, said Global Alliance of Non-Governmental Organisations for Road Safety chairman Prof Kulanthayan K.C. Mani.

He said it is the most promising intervention to solve the problem of road crashes.

Kulanthayan, who is attached to the Universiti Putra Malaysia Department of Community Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, has been named the new head of the global alliance for two years, from 2022 to 2024.

He has been a board member since 2019 and is the third chairman since it was founded. He is also the first from Asia.

Kulanthayan has pledged to help meet the goal of a 50% decrease in fatalities and injuries set by the Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030.


On the 370,286 road crashes reported in Malaysia last year, which involved 4,539 deaths, he said it was equivalent to seven road crashes every 10 minutes and one death every two hours.

“There are many causes for road crashes, but the prime reason is speeding. Beating traffic lights, crossing double lines, using mobile phones and drink driving are examples of why road crashes take place.

“Once speed is managed, drivers can control their vehicles much better, and have the space and time to avoid crashes. In worst-case scenarios, if a crash happens, injuries will be less severe.”

Kulanthayan said he supports a proposal by the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research and the Federal Territories Ministry to lower speed limits in residential and school areas in Kuala Lumpur.

“This is in line with the Global Plan, launched by the World Health Organisation. It recommends 30kph speed zones in areas with pedestrian movement and schools.”

He said an adult could tolerate injuries caused by vehicles traveling at speeds of up to 30kph.

“Anything above that would result in possible fatalities. It is much lower in the case of children.”

Kulanthayan said pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists are categorised as vulnerable road users, directly exposed to impact caused by collisions.

He added that the riskiest road crashes are those involving frontal collisions, followed by side-impact and rear collisions.

“Beating traffic lights and crossing double lines would lead to frontal collisions, which are very dangerous and can easily end up as fatal crashes.”

He said being distracted by mobile phones and driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs lead to loss of concentration, creating risks for crashes.


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Tarikh Input: 28/04/2022 | Kemaskini: 28/04/2022 | ahmadmustafa


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