News Resourse: NST Online
KUALA LUMPUR: After years of searching for reasons for the high accident and fatality rate in the country, the authorities said yesterday it could be due to low quality brake pads found in almost all older vehicles.
Road Safety Department director-general Datuk Suret Singh said yesterday replacement brake pads installed by smaller workshops were "of the worst quality in the world".
He said the department was now appealing to Malaysians to change worn-out brake pads only at authorised dealers for car parts.
"Motorists can go to the normal workshops to service their car or for oil change but do not go to these shops to change brake pads.
"The prices may be half the price of original brake pads but we have discovered they are of the worst quality, especially when braking on wet roads," he told the New Straits Times yesterday.
To stop motorists from buying cheap brake pads manufactured locally, he said the authorised dealers had agreed to lower their prices from July next year.
This was because a "massive clean up" of lower quality brake pads would start in eight months' time to stop workshop operators from buying and selling such brake pads, he said, citing the example of motorcycle brake pads sold by local manufacturers to vendors at RM2 each.
"These brake pads are sold to bike owners at RM15 each. These brake pads are truly lethal for them."
Suret said that with the rainy season in full swing, he hoped those driving with cheap brake pads would follow two simple tips to protect their lives and the lives of family members.
First, they should drive with a gap of at least six car-lengths.
Second, they should drive at speeds 20 per cent lower than usual.
"The problem of bad driving in bad weather is compounded by poor brakes, and this could be one of the main reasons we see more accidents during the rainy season."