Minister to contractors: Don’t wait for accidents or complaints, ensure safety on Pan Borneo Highway

A file photo of the Nyabau Section (WPC10) of the Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak. Photo credit: Dany Akbar

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By Karen Bong

KUCHING, June 10: Contractors need to proactively implement measures and fulfil their obligations to mitigate risks, including proper installation of signages, especially at construction sites along the Pan Borneo Highway in Sarawak, to ensure the safety of road users.

Issuing this stern reminder, Federal Works Minister Dato Sri Alexander Nanta Linggi emphasised that the contractors must ensure safety at construction sites and the safe usage of the highway in all sections.

“They should not wait for accidents or public complaints to occur before they act. The terms and conditions of the contract clearly outline this responsibility.

“They should take it upon themselves to uphold this responsibility and prioritise the safe usage of the highway, particularly in areas where construction is in its final stages,” he told DayakDaily in an exclusive interview recently.

The Minister’s strong call to action comes in response to the increase in fatal accidents and public complaints regarding the confusion due to the lack of signages and road changes.

Alexander Nanta Linggi (file photo)

Admitting that signages may be insufficient along the Pan Borneo Highway, Nanta, who is also Kapit MP, said the Ministry is fully aware of the situation and assured the public that efforts have been made to address these concerns.

However, he also stressed the importance of road users exercising caution and reducing speed when travelling along the highway, especially in sections where construction is still underway.

“It is crucial to understand that there are sections of the Pan Borneo Highway that are still undergoing construction in the final stage. The signage may be confusing and different from what the public is accustomed to seeing on completed roads.

“As far as authorities are concerned, these issues are being looked into, and actions are being taken to improve the situation along the Pan Borneo Highway,” he said.

Furthermore, contractors responsible for the construction have also been instructed to place additional cautionary signage to ensure the safety of road users.

File photo of the Lundu Section (WPC02) of the Pan Borneo Highway Sarawak. Photo credit: Dany Akbar

On installing signage to indicate directions and other necessary accessories, Nanta explained that they would be installed as part of the contractual obligations, with contractors required to comply with standards for highways and regular roads.

“Signages would surely have been put up in stretches that have been completed,” he added.

Meanwhile, the overall progress of the Pan Borneo Highway in Sarawak currently stands at 95 per cent, with the expected completion date set for November this year. — DayakDaily