KUCHING: Eliminating black spots or accident-prone areas on Sarawak's Pan-Borneo trunk road would be given priority to improve the safety of the road users, said Works Minister Datuk Fadillah Yusof, here, today.
He said a substantial amount of funds had been proposed for this purpose to be included in the 2014 Budget to be tabled by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak this October.
"The amount proposed is in accordance with the request submitted by the Sarawak government to my ministry recently," he told reporters after handing over financial aid to 27 mosques.
Fadilah said the proposal was made following a study conducted which revealed that the conditions of certain parts of the road had contributed to frequent road accidents.
"Areas where road accidents occurred more than three times at the same spot due to the road conditions are considered as black spots, and we want to rectify the problems to improve the safety of the road users."
Fadillah said despite the emphasis given to improving the road conditions, it was not a major contributing factor to accidents compared to human error or vehicle mechanism faults.
He said the emphasis came along with the plan to upgrade the whole stretch of the Pan-Borneo trunk road into a highway by 2018.
"How much work we can do on this plan will depend on how much funds we get yearly for it and definitely it will be done in stages," he added.
When met by reporters previously, Fadillah had said that the Sibu-Bintulu-Miri section of the trunk road would be upgraded first to highway standard and was expected to be completed by 2015.
The over-1,000km Pan Borneo trunk road connects Sarawak with Sabah, Brunei and Indonesia's territory of Kalimantan. -- BERNAMA