Source: Lianhe Zaobao.

# “PMDs belongs on the road and not on our path”

by Vasanthan Govindasamy (Bob)

I was reading the report submitted by the Active Mobility Advisory Panel who had given their recommendations on Personal Mobility Device (PMD) usage on shared paths and footpaths. It’s amazing to read their credentials.

Seems like all of them are big guns. All they had to say was the obvious as anyone with common sense would be able to do the same. But what amazes me is how they derived with the speed calculations.

The report suggested a recommended maximum speed of 25kmh on a shared path and 15kmh on a footpath. Where in the world did they pluck such speed limits? Was there science involved in it, specifically Newton’s laws on velocity? I don’t know.

And they limited the weight of such demons to 20kg with no considerations for weight for the person behind the demons. Hence 20 kg machine will potentially be an 80 kg killing machine if the rider was 60 kg. How do they come out with their weight limit? I am just curious.

Take for example a car travelling at 25 km/h, it reactive stopping distance when sighting obstacle will be 8 meters. And let’s say PMD travels at the same speed, how soon can they stop the machines safely when they see an obstacle, in this instance a pedestrian.

The report was a classic schoolboy project work with statistics on people the committee interviewed and how people viewed sharing their paths with the speed demons. I was dumbfounded.

And if I were to do a similar report, I would have done an impact tolerance study especially for the frail for they have a lower trauma tolerant level as we are an ageing population. This I would need emergency workers for their inputs and not some cycling committee members.

To me, PMD and humans should not be holding hands on a similar path. Period.

One is a killing Machine even if it’s at 25kmh and the other the frail old and fragile young. Please stop these potential killers. And if you don’t, I hope some perm secs family get injured in the same way the former perm Sec Wife was killed in an accident with a tipper lorry. Parliament passed a law to limit speeds to 50kmh by mechanically adjusting the accelerator on such tippers.

I am not heartless but I worry for my family. I see another death just waiting to happen. Speeding is a demon and you can’t control it when you get a kick out of it no matter how punitive the punishment is. But the sad truth is they have potential targets who don’t have a clue what they are in for the pedestrians. Reality will sink only after you get hit.

So stand up Singapore, especially if you have family members. Talk to your Member of Parliament, email the Ministers and let us all do something to stop this. PMDs belongs on the road and not on our path.