Jakarta police plead for calm after shootings on city's roads

Jakarta police plead for calm after shootings on city's roads
GRIDLOCK: A survey this year showed that traffic in Jakarta moves at an average speed of 8.3kmh, the worst in the world.
PHOTO: AFP

Keep a cool head. And try not to shoot each other.

Jakarta Police chief Inspector-General Tito Karnavian gave this advice to drivers yesterday after two shooting incidents in Jakarta recently, reported the Jakarta Post.

The shootings happened on toll roads in the Indonesian capital.

Jakarta has the worst traffic in the world with the average driver having to stop 33,240 times a year - more than twice the number in New York.

Last week, a driver in a Kia Picanto shot at a Daihatsu Xenia in Cipayung, East Jakarta.

His beef? That he had suddenly been overtaken.

Even though there were no casualties, police are looking into the case.

On Sunday, a similar incident occurred involving the drivers of a Honda Jazz and a Toyota Avanza on a toll road in Depok.

The Honda driver made a police report that the Toyota driver shot at his car.

The case is under investigation with the military police because the shooter, who is still on the run, is believed to be a military officer.

"Both cases happened because the drivers were too emotional. They tried to overtake each other," Insp Gen Tito was quoted as saying by kompas.com.

He called on drivers to respect each other, especially since traffic congestion in the capital was worsening.

He said: "Everyone seems to be in a rush. I ask you all to be more patient."

The Inspector-General also called on gun users to use their weapons strictly for safety and not for threatening others on the roads.

WORST TRAFFIC

A survey by British lubricant producer Castrol earlier this year showed that Jakarta has the worst traffic in the world.

The average speed is a mere 8.3kmh, Reuters reported.

Making matters worse, at least a thousand new cars and motorbikes are added to the city's roads each day, government figures show.

Mr Budi Edi Praitno, a Jakarta commuter, said: "Congestion in Jakarta is already at an alarming level. In the not-too-distant future, the city will be paralysed by traffic."

He had traded in his motorcycle for a bicycle to trim a few minutes from his 30km commute, but it still takes more than an hour.

There are hopes that a mass rapid transit system, under construction and slated to open in 2018, will provide some much-needed relief.


This article was first published on August 6, 2015.
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