20 road users were found guilty and fined between RM1,000 and RM2,000 by the Magistrate’s Court Alor Gajah for driving on the emergency lane, in May.
These road users are responsible for the late arrival of an ambulance at a crash site at KM228 of PLUS highway, near Pedas-Linggi rest and service area, which led to the death of two motorcyclists who were involved in the accident on 22 May, 2016.
Magistrate Nor Azizah Yusof handed down the sentence after all the accused has been identified, comprising 16 men and four women aged between 23 and 65. They pleaded guilty to their respective charges.
6 accused were fined RM1,000, while 11 accused were fined RM1,500 and 3 others were fined RM2,000. The court also ordered 19 accused to serve 1 month’s jail sentence, while 1 accused who was fined RM2,000 with 2 months’ jail sentence if they failed to pay the fine.
They were charged under Rule 53 (1) of the Road Traffic Act 1959 and punishable under Section 119 (2) of the Road Transport Act 1987 which carries a maximum imprisonment of 6 months or fine of up to RM2,000 or both upon conviction.
In mitigation for a lenient sentence, the drivers said they had used the emergency lane to get to their destinations quickly, to avoid traffic congestion, they were bursting to go to the toilet, due to vehicles breakdown and unaware of the emergency lane rules.
Nor Azizah said the court should take into account the public interest in imposing sentences because the offences had not only affected accident victims but also other motorists.
“If you were not using the emergency lane, the help could be channelled immediately…in fact, vehicles involved in a crash can be removed quickly to avoid traffic congestion.
“The actions of certain people have resulted in slow emergency response…think of those who are really in need (help). If you are the victim’s family, of course you will be angry,” she said.
Prosecuting officer Nur Azmina Jacqueline Abdullah from the Road Transport Department (RTD) prosecuted, while all the accused were not represented.