Volvo Malaysia awards students for innovative road safety ideas
Muhammad Isa Lim, Seri Budiman Hakim bin Masduki, and Mohamad Hamizan Halim from Universiti Malaysia Sabah, and Gary Chen from Universiti Malaysia Kelantan emerged victorious after outshining 700 other participants nationwide in the Road Safety Innovation Chllenge 2013, bagging an all-expense paid study trip each to Sweden, Thailand, and Singapore respectively.
Organised by Volvo Malaysia, in collaboration with the Malaysian Innovation Agency(AIM) and University Putra Malaysia(UPM), the challenge was a a part of the iSRTEC (Innovative solutions to reduce crashes between trucks and motorcycles) initiative, a joint effort between Volvo Trucks, UPM, AIM, Business Sweden, and the Traffic Safety Centre of Sweden, aiming to recommend solutions to reduce crashes between trucks and motorcyclists in Malaysia.
Launched in September 2013 in conjunction with the Sweden Malaysia Innovation Days, the challenge was open to tertiary-level students and the public. While students were required to submit video presentations with an idea or a message that revolves around issues associated to safety, members of the public were required to submit sticker designs for motorcyclists’ helmets.
Muhammad Isa’s winning entry suggested that truckers should be encouraged to operate more at night, when there are fewer motorcyclists, and that trucks that travel during the day should be charged higher toll rates so that they would prefer operating at night.
Second prize winners Seri Budiman Hakim and Mohamad Hamizan Halim, on the other hand, came up with the “Bike Bug” concept, where they proposed that GPS based transmitters that can detect motorcyclists should be installed in trucks, where the bugs will alert the driver when there is a bike nearby.
Gary Chen, who won third prize, came up with an idea where there should be an ‘eye-ball monitor’ in trucks, where the driver’s level of alertness is constantly monitored. The proposal also suggested that the monitor would trigger an alarm when the driver’s showing signs of fatigue.
The 10 winners of the public category were presented an iPad each by Volvo Trucks Malaysia. According to the company, all entries were judged based on innovativeness of the idea, impact on Malaysian roads, feasibility, implementation capability, and sustainability.