First off-road training facility in Sarawak opens in Singai, Bau

Jinep (blue shirt) with Paul (front passenger) and other invited guests pose for a group photo in one of the academy's vehicles before driving it through a tree trunk as a gimmick to launch the Sarawak 4x4 Trainning Academy on May 12, 2023.

By Christopher Lidom

KUCHING, May 12: Sarawak’s first off-road driver training facility to upgrade safety awareness and driving skills among drivers of 4x4s throughout the region opened its doors at Kampung Barieng in Singai, Bau.

Sarawak Deputy Minister of Transport Dato Henry Harry Jinep said it provides the locals with social and economic activities and said Kampung Barieng has a challenging terrain suitable for 4×4 training.

He also welcomed the initiative from off-road driving associations to formulate a policy for the government to recognise four-wheel drive (also called 4×4 or 4WD) vehicle driving certificates and licenses.

According to Henry, who is also Tasik Biru assemblyman, currently, the government does not have a legitimate recognition or control of 4×4 vehicles and off-road driving.

He said there is no policy that bans or prohibits the driver not to drive their vehicle off-road if they do not acquire recognition.

“Since I am in the Ministry of Transport Sarawak, we look forward to working together on formulating the policy and bringing it up to the government,” he said.

Jinep said this when officiating at the opening ceremony of the facility at Kampung Barieng in Singai, Bau, today.

The directors of 4X4 Quest, Paul Si Poh Lim and Chai Yew Foo, have a combined total of over 60 years of experience in 4WD activities at home and abroad, in addition to being certified as professional instructors by the United Kingdom’s Royal Society for Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), and as trainers by Malaysia’s Human Resource Development Corporation (HRDC).

Facilities include a dedicated lecture hall with an adjoining obstacle course, which enable trainees to learn basic theory and technical subjects alongside hands-on, practical sessions that improve retention.

A more extensive track simulating real-world off-road driving conditions is also nearby. — DayakDaily