Forum: Step up enforcement to curb the problem of idling vehicles

Smoking is an unhealthy habit, and over the years, Singapore has managed to reduce irresponsible smoking by imposing fines when education was in vain (Worth keeping track of number of condos with smoke-free by-laws, Oct 16).

The smoking problem is more limited now as smokers have to adhere to many dos and dont's as to where they can smoke. Singapore should now move on to tackle vehicular emissions (a deadlier type of smoke) which I feel is a larger problem.

To put in place regulation to deter smoking on balconies is good, but not as important as the elimination of idling vehicles, which are easy to find around Singapore. Likewise, going after some patients smoking in the grounds of Tan Tock Seng Hospital, for example, is not as productive as dealing with the larger threat posed by idling vehicles like taxis in the same area waiting for passengers.

We should now crack down on inconsiderate motorists who still let their engines idle, many doing it way past the allowed five minutes. These include drivers waiting to pick up their children from school and shuttle bus drivers waiting for passengers. Other drivers may be napping or using their mobile phone in the air-conditioned comfort of their vehicles.

The vehicular emissions pose hazards to our health and contribute to global warming.

Just like smoking, littering and cleaning our tables after a meal at hawker centres, we already have in place rules against idling vehicles. We just need to do a better job of enforcing them. Enforcement is key and I feel it is the weakest link now. We must step it up to send the message home.

Ho San Cheow