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Singapore Has The Best Roads In The World, Malaysia Ranks 12th Worst

Singapore Has The Best Roads In The World, Malaysia Ranks 12th Worst

The road quality of Malaysia has decreased by over 5% in the last 5 years.

Fernando Fong

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Is Malaysia a developing or developed country?

If our road condition is anything to go by, we are certainly far from being developed.

Malaysian roads are pretty bad, according to a research report titled ‘Worst and Best Roads – US and International Ranking’ conducted by a driver education firm, Zutobi.

The study analyzed 59 countries and gave Malaysia an overall safety score of 3.32 out of 10.

The score is based on road quality, road quality improvement, road deaths, and the relative size of the road network.

Malaysia has the 12th lowest position among 59 countries with the worst roads.

Malaysia also recorded the second highest road deaths worldwide at 22.76 per 100,000 people.

Misery Loves Company

Besides Malaysia, Kuwait is listed as the country with the worst roads in the world, followed by Costa Rica, Georgia, Panama and New Zealand.

If any consolation, Malaysians don’t need to go far to experience the best roads in the world because Singapore has the best.

The island republic outshines the rest with the highest overall road score of over 9/10.

Singapore also has the fewest road traffic deaths, 1.69 per 100,000 people

But how reliable is the research report?

It is based on the length of each country’s road network with information derived from

The research report also considered the road quality score per country with data from

Why Invest In Road Research?

Do we need to bother about such a study?

Yes, because driving on high-quality roads provides multiple benefits, especially for travellers.

READ MORE: Road Repairs Takes Time As It’s Toll-Free, Bung Mokhtar Tells Sabahans

Optimal road condition means a more comfortable road trip and a more pleasing travel experience.

Bad road conditions can lead to an increase in accidents, which can, in turn, lead to more injuries; and, worst, fatalities.

READ MORE: “Can’t Wait Anymore!” Pahang Assemblyman Fixes Potholes Himself Twice To Prevent Future Accidents

What Makes The Quality Of Our Roads So Bad? 

Roads in Malaysia are classified into two broad categories: federal roads and state Roads.

Federal roads are those declared under the Federal Roads Ordinace (1959) and maintained by the Public Works Department (JKR).

As for state roads, the construction and maintenance works are managed by the JKR of each state and funded by state governments.

In January 2021, JKR vowed to repair potholes within 24 hours.

The question is, is the quality of the roads in Malaysia so bad that almost 64,000 potholes must be patched that year? 

@jhonetz3 #foryoupage ♬ suara asli – Jhonetz

That’s just the number that was successfully patched, roughly how many are the actual potholes on the roads in Malaysia?

It’s easy to point fingers, but as taxpayers and road users, we have the right to speak up to demand better road quality.

READ MORE: Kelantan Villagers Waited For More Than 30 Years For Gravel Road To Be Tarred

How many are paved to standard based on the nearly 64,000 potholed road pavements? 

Roads not properly paved throughout the country have caused traffic accidents daily.

What about the quality of the materials used to build the road?

Is it comparable to road standards in other developed countries?

Many questions arise, but only the federal and state governments have the answer.

The Mother Of All Election Promises

To add to the problem, road maintenance in Malaysia has been linked to politics.

Critics accuse that roads are poorly built, so frequent repairs would keep politicians’ bank accounts solid and feed the contractors.

In 2018, it was alleged that proper roads in Johor were damaged to justify road repairs and block rival politicians from going on election campaigns.

The allegation was made by no less than former prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

While we cannot do anything about our road conditions immediately, at least until the election comes, a few pointers can help us stay safe in poor road conditions.

Plan Ahead

The best way to stay safe in poor road conditions is to plan how you’ll change your driving while dealing with them.

It can be as simple as planning the best route or a designated driver, especially on road trips that involve family members.

 Take time to plan the journey – even those that feel routine.

Allow A Wide Driving Berth

Always give the vehicle in front of you as much room as possible to ensure your safety and theirs.

The authorities recommend following the 3-second rule, allowing a minimum of 3 seconds of travel between our vehicle and the vehicle in front of us.

Remove Distractions

One of the easiest ways to stay safe in poor road conditions is to eliminate outside distractions that could impair your driving ability.

You should never text on your phone while driving, but in bad road conditions, it becomes even more dangerous to be distracted by your phone.

Even having the radio up too loud could distract you to the point of a mistake.

Leave the distractions for later and stay focused on driving safely.

Pull Over If Necessary

At the end of the day, no journey is worth your life.

If it’s safe to do so and you think it’s safer than continuing to drive, don’t be afraid to pull over and wait out the worst weather.

Terrible weather conditions can cause accidents to even the most cautious driver, so don’t risk it if you feel uncomfortable driving.

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