Enforcement action on child safety seats (CRS) in private cars will only be carried out six months after the implementation of the ruling, said Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook.
He stressed that the ruling will be effective from Jan 1 and action will be taken against errant motorists after the first six months which have been allocated to educate and increase awareness among the public of the safety aspect of the seats.
“I do not want to always focus on summons. We have said that there will be no summons for the first six months but of course, after that, if the law is not enforced, then it is not effective.
“So of course at some point, there must be enforcement... but as I said, the first six months, we will focus on education. There will be no action taken in the form of summons, but after six months, there has to be action taken against anyone who does not abide by the law, if not you make a mockery of the law,” he told reporters after launching the “Click For Community Safety” Programme in Seremban today.
Also present were Ikatan Komuniti Selamat chairperson Lee Lam Thye, chairperson of the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research Suret Singh, managing director of the North-South Expressway (Plus) Azman Ismail and Malaysian Highway Authority assistant director of operations monitoring, Mohd Salmi Yahya.
Loke said the enforcement does not mean that the ministry was adopting a hard line but it wants to educate the public on the safety of their children.
“We are not taking a hard line, but we want the public to understand, we have said it many times, and I will continue saying that this ruling is for the sake of safety, to protect the lives of our children.
“We hope that parents understand, although we may face some hardship in terms of additional costs, but it is an expense that will save the lives of our own children,” he said.
At the same time, he said, since the use of the child safety seats was a necessity for all vehicles, the ministry would look at how to reduce the price of the seats.
“We will work with private companies, non-governmental organisations, and we will encourage companies to sponsor needy families.
“But this (subsidy for safety seats) cannot be across the board for everyone as it involves a large sum (of money). We cannot give to everyone but maybe to the needy. The point is this policy must start, if not, we will never do it. There must be a starting point, which is Jan 1,” he said.
Earlier, in his speech, Loke welcomed non-governmental organisations to help increase public awareness of road safety, especially the use of child safety seats.