‘New tinting rules pose danger to taxi drivers’

The new JPJ rules allow motorists to have blackout tinting for their rear windscreen and rear windows.

PETALING JAYA: Taxi associations are the latest to voice out against the transport ministry’s decision to lift restrictions on the darkness of tints for the rear windows and rear windscreens of private vehicles.

Speaking to FMT, Big Blue Taxi Facilities Sdn Bhd adviser Shamsubahrin Ismail said with its new rules, Putrajaya was putting the security of passengers and taxi drivers at risk.

“I agree with the police who initially objected to the new ruling.

“To me, this is unwise as it will encourage more unwanted activities and open the door to offences,” he said, adding this included the increased risk of taxi drivers and ride-hailing passengers being robbed.

“We are worried it will lead to rape, molest, robbery and so on. Even now, with the existing restrictions, all sorts of crimes happen,” he told FMT.

Shamsubahrin Ismail.

Shamsubahrin also said that blackout tinted windows were not essential, and should only be for those suffering from illnesses or VIPs like ministers.

“No need for rich people, VVIPs to have such dark tinted windows. Why prioritise the rich?” he said when talking about the RM5,000 fee imposed on those who want to register to have full blackout tints on their cars.

Those with health conditions and have a letter from a government doctor are exempted from paying this fee.

Transport Minister Loke Siew Fook had earlier said new regulations allowing blackout tints for rear car windshields and windows would stay despite protests.

Yesterday, Bukit Aman Investigation and Traffic Enforcement Department director Azisman Alias said police had accepted the decision of the government on the new ruling on tinted windows for private cars.

“We adhere to and respect the decision of the transport minister on this matter,” he said.

The Road Transport Department (JPJ) had previously allowed a tint of 70% for rear windscreens and rear passenger windows, 50% for the driver and front passenger windows, and 30% for the front windshield.

Now, the front windshields must allow 70% light through. The driver and front passenger side windows must allow 50% light through.

Gabungan Teksi Malaysia chairman Kamarudin Hussain also criticised Loke for ignoring the security concerns of the police.

He added that cars used for e-hailing should also be subject to the same tint rules as taxis.

Loke had said the ministry had taken into account the findings of a workshop organised in 2014, in which the police also contributed their views.

According to ministry statistics, there were 1,631 applications for blackout tints for security reasons and 349 due to health reasons last year.