KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 — In apparent defiance of the conditional movement control order (CMCO), hundreds, if not thousands of Malaysians are attempting to return to their hometowns for Hari Raya festivities.
According to official traffic reports announced by the Malaysian Highway Authority (LLM) through its official Twitter account, traffic flow from the capital of Kuala Lumpur heading north and south of the PLUS Highway has reached a crawl.
As of 2pm, traffic heading towards Tanjung Malim, Perak from Lembah Beringin, Selangor has come to a complete standstill.
Other routes reporting heavy traffic include the Kuala Lumpur-Seremban Expressway, The North-South Expressway Central Link (ELITE) and the New Klang Valley Expressway (NKVE).
Similar traffic congestion was also reported along other federal routes heading from the capital with Jalan Kuala Lumpur-Tanjung Malim reporting a whopping delay of at least two hours.
Astro Radio Traffic also reported heavy traffic at the Kuala Lumpur-Karak Highway between the Gombak toll plaza and the Bentong toll plaza as of 3.20pm today.
#kltu Expect heavy traffic on:— Astro Radio Traffic (@astrotraffic) May 21, 2020
NKVE: from DUKE & Publika towards the Duta toll plaza
MRR2: Beverly Heights - Dataran Ukay & Taman Connaught - TBS
JALAN KUCHING: Bukit Tunku - Batu Caves
KL KARAK HWAY: at the Gombak toll plaza & Bentong toll plaza#PetronTrafficUpdate #Waze
Another video clip posted to the Siakap Keli Facebook page which has gone viral showed traffic at a standstill along the North-South Expressway (north bound) towards Tanjung Malim.
Later when contacted, PLUS Operations Excellence head Mohd Yusuf Abdul Aziz said PLUS Malaysia Bhd expected around 900,000 vehicles daily as festivities approached.
In usual circumstances, Mohd Yusuf said the highway serviced at least 1,7 million vehicles daily.
“Therefore we are not expecting an increase of vehicles traveling interstate following enforcement by the authorities to limit people’s movement.
“For now, traffic on the highway is under control except several locations where manned roadblocks set up by the police for northbound and southbound traffic,” he told Malay Mail.
According to Mohd Yusuf, police roadblocks have been set up along toll plaza at Hutan Kampung, Alor Setar (Kedah); Juru (Pulau Pinang); Jalan Duta and Jalan Sungai Besi (Kuala Lumpur) and Skudai (Johor).
On top of that, roadblocks along the mainline next to PLUS interchange have also been set up in Putra Mahkota, Bandar Serenia near the PLUS-managed ELITE and Tanjung Malim, Perak.
According to the various traffic reports, the congestion stemmed from manned roadblocks set up by the police to intercept non-essential interstate travel.
Earlier today, Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob warned that the authorities will begin issuing on-the-spot compounds to motorists following the continued barrage of “balik kampung” attempts.
He also asserted that no one will be allowed to travel interstate beginning today.
* A previous version of this story contained an error which has since been corrected.