Take tougher action against errant motorcyclists

The death of a senior citizen from a collision with a motorcycle on the pavement is a wake-up call for the authorities to improve their enforcement ("Man jailed for fatal accident while kick-starting motorcycle"; May 17).

Motorcycles are inherently unstable, and pedestrians can be seriously injured by moving and stationary motorcycles.

Motorcyclists riding and parking on pedestrian facilities are becoming prevalent. Barrier-free access to walking facilities unintentionally facilitates this.

The Traffic Police (TP) and Land Transport Authority (LTA) are responsible for taking enforcement action against riding and parking violations, respectively, on pavements.

Enforcement against errant motorcyclists on walking facilities in estates (excluding pavements) is mostly the responsibility of town councils (TCs).

The nimbleness of motorcycles and transitory nature of motorcyclists' offences make it very difficult to implement an effective enforcement strategy that can detect their illegal moves in real time.

Community vigilance is, thus, indispensable to effectively deter these errant motorcyclists.

The public could submit real-time evidence of errant motorcyclists via a mobile app. If the filmed motorcycle has no antecedent, a written warning can be hand-delivered to the last-known local residential address of the registered vehicle's owner.

If the photographed motorcycle bears a foreign-registration plate, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority's assistance is required to deliver the warning.

A motorcycle owner who pleads that the offence was committed by another person must supply irrefutable evidence and the offender's particulars.

With the TP's and LTA's enforcement teams jointly enforcing safe riding of bicycles and personal mobility devices on pavements, the officers should be empowered to nab errant motorcyclists on the same pavements.

It is paradoxical if the officers ignore the higher risks to pedestrian safety posed by errant motorcyclists, identifiable by their vehicle registration plates, riding and parking on pavements in their presence.

Volunteer riding patrols can submit film evidence of errant motorcyclists.

As errant motorcyclists usually use a combination of pavements and other walking facilities (including HDB void decks), the TP and LTA could advise and partially fund TCs' enforcement efforts, and authorise TC patrols to take enforcement action against errant motorcyclists seen riding or parking on pavements.

All owners of motorcycles caught or recorded on film being ridden or parked on walking facilities will have to install in-vehicle cameras.

A number of motorcyclists commit their offences while working. The authorities could encourage companies that employ field employees, delivery staff and messengers who use motorcycles to perform their jobs, to exercise corporate social responsibility. They should also issue in-vehicle or helmet cameras to instil safe riding habits.

Tan Lay Hoon (Ms)