Malaysia's Works Ministry vows to fix potholes in 24 hours

PETALING JAYA • Malaysia’s Works Ministry has pledged to fix potholes on federal roads within 24 hours of receiving a complaint, as the issue of road maintenance continues to be parodied.

The ministry said that under its zero potholes campaign, the patching of potholes or temporary repairs on federal roads will be conducted within 24 hours, while permanent repairs will be done in three days as per the Federal Road Maintenance contract.

The ministry’s response followed backlash against the government for alleged double standards in dealing with a Cabinet minister and the public.

Hours after Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin shared on Twitter on Sunday how he fell after encountering an uneven patch of road while riding his bicycle in Banting, Selangor, the Public Works Department (JKR) swiftly apologised to Mr Khairy on Twitter.

The department fixed the patch of road within 24 hours of the accident, raising public ire that many potholes were not fixed as quickly despite many complaints.

The Works Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday that the campaign, which previously ran from 2016 to 2018, was reintroduced in July last year.

It said this was an initiative of the ministry with JKR and six concessionaires for federal road maintenance.

“Potholes refer to holes with widths from below 200mm up to 1,000mm. If the width of the hole is below 200mm, it does not involve any cutting, and will be patched.

“When the width of the hole is up to 1,000mm, it will require the part of the road to be cut before it is patched,” the ministry said, adding that holes with a width of over 1,000mm will be treated as “pavement failure”.

The ministry added that through Budget 2021, the government had allocated RM100 million (S$32.8 million) for the implementation of “weight in motion” devices on identified federal roads.

It said that it took the safety of road users seriously, adding that the road network in Malaysia is 254,477.6km long.

The ministry also said that the government had detected and fixed almost 200,000 potholes on roads last year.



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