With this year’s Chinese New Year celebrations, families all over the country are planning trips back to their hometowns and braving the traffic that comes with it.
In conjunction with this, and to ease the load of travel costs, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim announced toll exemptions for all vehicles from 20 to 21 January.
The first day of Chinese New Year celebrations this year starts on 22 January, ringing in the Year of The Rabbit. Families often travel a couple days before to prep food and activities for reunion dinners.
It was Transport Minister Anthony Loke who brought up the matter during a Cabinet meeting after he had discussed the topic with toll concession companies.
In the announcement at the press conference after today’s Cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister mentioned that these toll exemptions would cost the government a whopping RM40 million.
“Good news…. The transport minister has taken the initiative to hold discussions with toll concessionaires, and they have agreed to waive toll charges on the 20th and 21st,” said Anwar.
On top of this, yesterday Anthony Loke announced that there will be 2,000 JPJ officers deployed during the festive weekend, and reminded the public of 7 major offences on the road and their consequences.
The offences include:
- Cutting queue
- Overtaking on double lines
- Running red lights
- Driving over the speed limit
- Usage of mobile phones while driving
- Not wearing a seat belt (or helmets for motorcycle drivers)
- Driving on the emergency lane
Offenders of these rules will receive a compound fine, but referred directly to the court.
To further ease traffic, the Transport Minister also mentioned that goods vehicles will be banned on the road during the same dates, as well as 24-25 January.
“This ban is aimed at lowering risk of road accidents due to mixed traffic flows between heavy vehicles and light vehicles on the road and on highways,” he told reporters.
According to Malay Mail, Works Minister Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi said that around 3.8 million vehicles were expected to use the highways nationwide starting this weekend.
JUICE urges everyone on the road this weekend to drive safe and have a prosperous Chinese New Year!