The Works Minister has confirmed that motorcycles are allowed on the Federal Highway due to bike lane upgrade.
His clarification was in response to a press article about bikes “invading” the highway.
The works are slated to be completed in April 2018.
We recently highlighted a press article by the Malay Mail, questioning about motorcycles on the Federal Highway and the lack of apparent enforcement.
That Malay Mail “report” had induced a firestorm of finger pointing especially by drivers against motorcyclists. Truth is, as we already knew, parts of the motorcycle lane were closed for construction.
And that’s exactly what the Works Minister, Ybhg. Dato’ Sri Haji Fadillah Bin Haji Yusof clarified.
According to the Minister, the Public Works Department (PWD or more well known as JKR) has been carrying out upgrading works on an 8.1-km stretch on both sides of the Federal Highway from Kota Darul Ehsan to Kelab Gold Subang. The upgrade is slated to be completed by April 2018.
As such, motorcyclists are allowed to use the main carriageway i.e. Federal Highway itself.
However, he added that Section 79(2) of the Road Transport Act 1987 stated that any motorist or even pedestrian who did not comply to traffic directions and signs is liable to a fine of not less than RM300 and not more RM2,000.
This statute has been set aside for the moment due the upgrading works and the traffic police and other relevant enforcement agencies have been informed of such work. It’s good to know that the authorities are being fair in this matter. But, please do not assume that we are allowed to ride the entire length of the highway outside of the motorcycle lane. We know the motorcycle lane is dangerous but the law’s the law.
He didn’t elaborate on instances where motorcyclists were forced to abandon the motorcycle lane due to flooding, however.
While we laud The Malay Mail’s effort in bringing such issues to light, we are still wondering if The Malay Mail had actually requested clarification with the relevant authorities first before publishing that particular “report.” It would’ve have been more constructive instead of being damning towards the plight of motorcyclists.