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Remove billboards that endanger public safety

Billboards should not distract, confuse or endanger pedestrians

The road from Jalan Bangsar turning into Jalan Maarof where the billboard stands - BENEDICT LOPEZ

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Like any other sphere of business activity, outdoor advertising has its rules and prohibitions.

These range from obtaining planning permission for displaying advertisements to self-regulatory rules guiding the content of the billboards and ensuring public safety.

It is mandatory for companies to adhere to such compliances. The onus is also on enforcement authorities to ensure that these companies don’t flout the rules.

If a company or business puts up an advertisement signboard or billboard at the roadside, it must obtain a signboard licence. If it puts up a signboard without local authority approval, it might be fined.

Consider public safety when erecting billboards. Billboards should not distract, confuse or endanger pedestrians. Never compromise the safety of motorists and pedestrians.

Just drive along Jalan Bangsar: next to the traffic lights at the junction turning into Jalan Maarof is an enormous billboard, which has been there for some time. Not only is the billboard in a dilapidated condition, it also blocks the pedestrian walkway.  

Upon reaching this billboard, pedestrians walking along this route daily have to step on the road to get over to the other side. This can be dangerous as motorists often speed along Jalan Bangsar when recklessly turning into Jalan Maarof. I had a close shave a few times because of inconsiderate and reckless drivers.

After a heavy downpour, a pool accumulates on the road and pedestrians have to get their shoes and sneakers drenched when they cross over to the other side.

Insane motorists sometimes deliberately speed on the pool of water, perhaps having fun at seeing pedestrians splashed and drenched. Some even hoot after their nefarious conduct! The Ugly Malaysian at his or her worst.

I exercise along this route daily and, several times, reckless motorists have nearly knocked me down. They have brazen disregard for pedestrians using this walkway.

Kuala Lumpur City Hall should immediately remove this billboard (top) before any untoward incident happens. It endangers pedestrians crossing the road to get to the opposite side.

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Benedict Lopez was director of the Malaysian Investment Development Authority in Stockholm and economics counsellor at the Malaysian embassy there in 2010-2014. He covered all five Nordic countries in the course of his work. A pragmatic optimist and now an Aliran member, he believes Malaysia can provide its people with the same benefits and privileges found in the Nordic countries - not a far-fetched dream but one that he hopes will be realised in his lifetime
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