Child Act may be used to punish parents who let underage kids drive

Child Act may be used to punish parents who let underage kids drive
Parents who allow children to ride motorcycles are liable to be punished by law. -The Star/ANN

KUALA LUMPUR - The police may use the Child Act 2001 to mete out stricter punishments to parents who allow children to ride motorcycles.

Federal traffic police chief Senior Asst Comm Datuk Mohd Fuad Abdul Latiff said currently those who allow underage individuals to drive or ride a vehicle are liable to be charged under Section 39(5) of the Road Transport Act 1987.

Section 39 restricts young persons under the age of 16 from driving a car or riding a motorcycle.

Section 39(5) states that any person who drives, or causes or permits any person to drive a motor vehicle in contravention of this section can be fined up to RM2,000 (S$750) or jailed for six months or both.

"We are consulting the Bukit Aman laws division to see if the Child Act could be used against vehicle owners. More needs to be done to stop underaged motorists from driving and riding vehicles.

"Parents and guardians do not seem to understand that they are putting their children in harm's way by allowing them on the roads without a licence," he said at Bukit Aman.

SAC Mohd Fuad said 1,696 deaths were reported between January and March this year. Of the total, 769 deaths involved victims aged between 16 and 35. He added that motorcyclists made up 63.3 per cent (1,074) of the deaths reported.

He also said 117,934 accidents were reported between January and March this year, which shows an increase of 3.3 per cent(3,819) compared to the 114,115 cases during the same time in 2014.

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