Singapore still at a nascent stage with PMDs

A personal mobility device user seen travelling alongside cars, vans and pickups in Geylang.
A personal mobility device user seen travelling alongside cars, vans and pickups in Geylang.PHOTO: ST FILE

I refer to the Sunday Times report (Too fast and too reckless, July 7).

When the Active Mobility Advisory Panel reviewed the regulations last year, we made a carefully-considered recommendation to lower the speed limit on footpaths. This is because footpaths are used by many, including vulnerable individuals such as young children and the elderly. In crowded areas, riders may even be required to operate below recommended speeds to minimise the risk of accidents.

Unfortunately, there are some riders who flout the rules, knowingly or unknowingly. Some might do so as the paths are clear, others might exceed the speed limit by some margin. That's human behaviour - motorists will understand this.

Regardless, it is for public safety that regulations are implemented, including speed limits. I fully support the efforts by the authorities to increase awareness of the rules and enforce against speeding and reckless riding.

I have seen publicity banners displayed at walkways and brochures being distributed at community events.

The number of people who have attended and benefited from the Safe Riding Programme has also grown steadily,ranging from students to food delivery riders and foreign workers.

We can do our part by familiarising ourselves with the rules and guidelines, and sharing them with others.

The Land Transport Authority already conducts regular enforcement and is working to use its MyTransport.SG app for the public to report errant riders and leverage technology, such as closed-circuit television cameras and video analytics, to complement its enforcement efforts.

However, enforcement can only do so much. Education and positive role models are the way forward. It took us years to get people to stand on the left side of escalators and to allow passengers to alight from trains first before entering.

We are still at a nascent stage with personal mobility devices (PMDs), and while it will take time to inculcate safe and gracious path-sharing behaviour throughout our community, I am confident that we can get there, and I hope that all of us can contribute towards these efforts.

We cannot deny that bicycles and PMDs are forms of transport which can help contribute towards a more sustainable future.

For Singapore to be a liveable and vibrant city, we must learn to embrace such new developments. No great thing is suddenly created. Han Jok Kwang Active Mobility Advisory Panel member