KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 1 — The Transport Ministry said today newer speed enforcement cameras in the future may be retrofitted with features capable of capturing speed from digital vehicle registration plates or e-plates.

Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Hasbi Habibollah however said studies are still being conducted concerning the existing Automated Awareness Safety System (AwAS) to have them installed at new locations with such capabilities.

“As for improvements, there may be additional newer cameras installed but not in their current form, at new locations but this is still being studied in regards to e-plate usage,” he said in response to a supplementary question by Libaran MP Datuk Suhaimi Nasir at the Dewan Rakyat.

Formerly known as the Automated Enforcement System (AES), there are a total of 45 cameras currently in operation nationwide.

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Back in March, Transport Minister Anthony Loke said the digital license plate system would not be compulsory if Putrajaya introduced it, since vehicle owners would incur additional costs to install it.

Using radio frequency identification (RFID) technology, an electronic license plate emits a radio signal for tracking and digital monitoring.

Compared to conventional metal and plastic plates, proponents of e-plates have pushed for their implementation due to ease of congestion and prevention of car thefts.

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To elaborate, authorities will have an easier time checking vehicles digitally using the RFID system which means roadblocks can be conducted swiftly, and it would be harder for criminals to forge our digital details than the current plate system.

On AwAS, Hasbi said studies conducted by the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS) found that compliance with speed limit and road regulations at speed camera locations exceeded 99 per cent which has tremendously reduced the risk of vehicle collision at AwAS-enforced locations.

"Road users are always given clear reminders at camera-enforced locations by way of informing them through three advisory signboards.

"These AwAS cameras are aimed at ensuring all road users obey existing traffic regulations, especially in blackspot areas where frequent vehicle collisions occur," he said.