Tuesday, September 26, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 3:54 pm

According to The Star Online, roadusers will be monitored by surveillance cameras round-the-clock nationwide once the Automated Enforcement System (AES) is implemented. The Star further quoted Transport Minister Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy as saying that the Cabinet has given the green light for the implementation of AES in all the cities, highways, federal and state roads and accident-prone areas.

"He said all the pictures and date, including time and date, captured by the cameras would be sent to a control centre where police would ascertain whether traffic users had committed any offences." (source)

Well and good. The idea is good and would definitely curb traffic offences to a certain extent as shown in the experience of a few countries which implemented this system.

Now the multi-billion ringgit question is, "How much will it cost to have it implemented in all the cities, highways, federal and state roads and accident-prone areas?" The ITIS (Intergrated Transport Information System) traffic management system implemented in the Klang Valley alone costs RM365 million ringgit according to a report in The Sun (source) and RM400 million ringgit (plus RM20 million annual operation cost) according to a report in The New Straits Times Press (source). How much more will it cost to have something similar (with cameras and other state-of-the-art equipments) fixed across the country - read again : all the cities, highways, federal and state roads and accident-prone areas.

Perhaps, the Government will assure us that the traffic offences caught on camera will translate into police summonses to the traffic offenders which will translate to revenue to the Government (though the Transport Ministry states that revenue is through traffic summonses is not their priority). But hey! The rakyat will demand that these traffic summonses be recovered as it contributes to the revenue whichever way you look at it. And since we can more or less predict (judging from the recent trend of costs involving projects for the rakyat) that this AES thingy will be berbilion ringgit, the police better start taking effective steps to recover the outstanding traffic summonses.

Otherwise, it will also be just another good-to-show-off project into Malaysia's list of white elephants.

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At 12:42 am, Blogger doc

i rolled my eyes when i saw this on primetime news tonite. we've had cameras at traffic lights before but see where it got to? it worked well for a while - it took pictures & summons were issued. but later, either the cameras don't work, or the films weren't retrieved bcos of personnel shortages, so their function became ornamental. but the parties who benefitted are really the manufacturers, suppliers & installers of such cameras who will rake in millions (cities, highways etc, remember?). so we're worse than being back to square one, bcos we didn't learn from our mistakes.


At 1:59 am, Blogger David

In NZ we do not have the money to go hi-tech. The police use speed cameras and radar to catch speeding motorists. It has become an important revenue source for the government. The police is no longer very interested in catching burglars and other criminals because after catching them the govt needs to spend money on them in the courts and afterwards feeding them in our prisons!


At 1:44 pm, Blogger Sasha

hmm I think it'll just be a dummy la. Maybe 1 or 2 will work and they're post it in the news and hoping that everyone believes that its a real camera..Don't think they'll really spend money for it


At 8:57 am, Blogger Wuching

the whole world is being watched by the americans with their satelites!


At 4:21 pm, Blogger PabloPabla

doc : That's why my post ends with sarcasm knowing our money-spenders' track record.

david : I think in NZ, the citizens have long been programmed to abide by the traffic laws. Here, it is the other way round.

sasha : Oh no, they will still buy the real ones but don't use it that's all.

wuching : So, be careful what you do behind closed doors ;)