Is Express Rail Link Sdn. Bhd empowered by law to clamp cars and levy fines?

by Richard Yeoh

This morning, when I parked my car at the KL Sentral aeroport departure kerbside for 3 minutes to drop off someone to take the ERL aerotrain to KLIA, I was confronted by a worker who insisted on clamping my car despite the fact that I was about to move off.

I had to seek the intervention of a supervisor who insisted that ERL SB was entitled to clamp cars stopped at the kerbside. According to him, cars will only be released upon payment of a RM50 fine. In my case, fortunately the supervisor had the sense to use his discretion to release my car, but not without argument. They even had the temertiy to issue me a “summons” which I shall be happy to fax or scan to you.

This action raises various issues:

1. Is ERL authorised by law to take such action? Is the driveway in front of KL Sentral private property under ERL jurisdiction? Is ERL the proprietor of the driveway?

To the best of my knowledge, even the Police, DBKL and MBPJ do not resort to such action unless the vehicle is causing obstruction.

I noticed that even city police usually allow a grace period of 5-10 minutes before cars are summoned for parking offences.

2. How can ERL take such action when there are no clearly-visible warning signs?

3. Is this the way to encourage travellers to use the aero-train to KLIA?

Would appreciate your readers’ views on this.

  1. #1 by sheriff singh on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 3:07 pm

    Seems extremely drastic to me. How and where else do you drop passengers off? They don’t even do this at the airports.

    But this is Bolehland, everything “boleh”. Give someone a uniform (e.g. Rela etc) and they get all sorts of vision about their “power”. Don’t mess about with them. Maybe the ERL people see this as a way to boost their income.

    It is sad that human relationships in this country has deteriorated sharply that we are all becoming more authoritative, more argumentative, much more rude. We just don’t know how to be polite and decent anymore.

  2. #2 by J3 on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 3:16 pm

    The area could be private property and usually the police cant intervene , even though it is unreasonable.

  3. #3 by Woody on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 4:45 pm

    The little emperor are not only found in the government but in ERL also.

    If what they do goes uncheck, soon the shopping malls, hotels, office blocks and all private property owners will do the same.

    Perhaps I should also buy a clamp and in case anybody parks in front of my house blocking my entrance, I will clamp their cars…..

  4. #4 by J3 on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 5:22 pm

    Unless the road in front of your house is your property, you have no right to clamp the cars that block your access. Unless of course you have some legal right such as an express easement over the way with the local authorities.

    KL Sentral may not have surrendered the roads in the area to the local council and therefore it may be private property.

  5. #5 by brianyap on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 5:35 pm

    To be honest, I have little sympathy for those who blatantly disregard rules such as these. Maybe in Richard’s case, it was a genuine mistake, so I’m reserving my judgement. But people who think they have a right to park wherever is most convenient for them are simply being selfish, inconsiderate and anti-social. KL Sentral has a parking lot. If the driver needs to park the car, that’s where he/she needs to go. The drop-off/pickup areas are meant for people to do just that: drop off or pick up people. I really don’t think that it’s too much to ask.

    We see this type of behaviour everywhere: lazy people with two healthy legs using the disabled lifts at LRT stations; drivers who dump their cars wherever they please in the parking lot of shopping malls or on the street, even if it’s not a designated spot; people who insist on answering phone calls in the cinema… the list goes on. They might be very different actions, but I think they all stem from a similar mindset: I’m going to do what works best for me, screw everybody else.

    That being said, Richard’s questions on jurisdiction and whether private officials have the authority and right to deliver such penalties is are legitimate. Similar questions can also be asked about the right of homeowners to put up barricades and hire security personnel too. Do these homeowners have a right to prevent others from entering a public area? I think not. But people feel the police aren’t protecting them enough against lawbreakers, so they hire private security firms to do it. That the barricades themselves are also against the law doesn’t seem to be a concern to them.

    Once again, the problem lies, I think, in either a lack of clear jurisdiction or weak and inefficient enforcement by those who SHOULD have the authority. If the police or city council aren’t preventing or penalising people from committing parking offences on private property, then what can the management of these places do but take matters in their own hands? Even if their right and authority to do so is questionable?

  6. #6 by citizen on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 5:40 pm

    This is another example of legalised daylight robbery. Easy money. High revenue.

    Wheel clamping on private land should be banned as it extorts consumers for money. They’d prefer if more people park there. Surely, the management wouldn’t want you to see sign boards very clearly. The reasons are obvious, EASY MONEY. 50 cars per day, one month they got RM75k in there pocket. Better than ‘ah-long’ business.

  7. #7 by citizen on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 5:50 pm

    If clamping is enforced by ERL without sign boards, then the operation is illegal because that area is accessible by the public. Who the f’ck knows that is a clamping zone? It is like a bait, if you know what I mean.

  8. #8 by raverus on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 6:10 pm

    Probably manage and run by mor*ns……..welcome to Malaysia.

  9. #9 by izrafeil on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 6:17 pm

    i bet if you’re driving a BMW or MErcedes with heavily tinted glass, the parking guy will be terkencing2 kena marah kalau dia cuba. Ini lah malaysia (note the small cap), negara ku ku ku….

  10. #10 by greatstuff on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 6:39 pm

    Late last year my car was clamped by the security gaurd at road running parallel to Menara Bangsar Condominium, when I went to shop at Bangsar Shopping Complex. On 2 occasions I acknowledged the guard, my car also had an outstation (Perak)number plate, and there was no indication at all by him that I was parking “illegally”. and I certainly was not causing any obstruction to anyone.
    Apart from all the stressful inconvenience and humiliation,I had to pay RM100 to have my car released!
    There ought to be a regulatory body to control these “entrapment morons” who seem to be able take their out their own money grabbing laws as and when they please on an unsuspecting public. Even my letter of complaint to the condominium’s Management Committe appealing for their review on the matter has, so far, gone answered- fairly typical I suppose?

  11. #11 by Jeffrey on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 8:22 pm

    “Apart from all the stressful inconvenience and humiliation,I had to pay RM100 to have my car released! – greatstuff.

    It would cost about RM100 to get a tow car to tow your car back to your house along with their clamp? :)

  12. #12 by Jeffrey on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 8:26 pm

    but jokes aside I know of, and have seen a little boy of 8 who seemed able on 2 separate occasions to unravel at 2 different clamps (even though it was locked) with his bare hands. i wonder how he did that!

  13. #13 by Michael Sun on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 8:55 pm

    Nothing surprises me anymore in Bolehland.

    Give somebody a uniform to wear and presto! they become ‘superman” and behave like a sheriff in a cowboy film. Whether it is government (eg Rela) or private – sama2.

  14. #14 by shortie kiasu on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 8:57 pm

    The same situation happened at Mid Valley Mega Mall. Yesterday I parked my car at the kerbside for only 5 miniutes with the consent of the guard around, just to drop off a parcel, the car was clamped and fined RM50 to release the clamp. No traffic obstruction. Is this no man’s land now everywhere in the city and in country?

  15. #15 by k1980 on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 9:31 pm

    There is only one way to stop all this nonsense of extortions, and you all know how to do it. Make sure the bn tyranny loses its two-thirds majority in the coming polls. A parliament and state assemblies where the opposition makes up more than 40% of its seats will make sure that such nonsensical acts be cleared up within a matter of hours. All it takes is to sack on the spot anyone claiming the right to clamp vehicles on public property.

  16. #16 by Bobster on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 9:39 pm

    This is what people term as ‘monkey see monkey do’.

    Power abuse is so rampant in this country that it becomes a norm. You just give them some power, they will find any reason to clamp/saman when got the opportunity, many times trying to find fault for silly mistakes. MBPJ took over 1 yr to repair one broken drain cover (well, I took photos and sent it to The Star but never got published) but only take them few mins to clamp your car or give you a parking ticket. Similarly condo guards learn from the authorities, abuse their little power at times even ask ‘kopi’ to take out the clamp.

    I have resided in Spore for 6 yrs and never in my life ever experienced such efficient fault-finding officers even though the country notorious for ‘fining’ people. In developed countries, officers are practical people, many times they will let you go for minor offences. As human, sometimes we do break law unknowingly. But in this Bolehland, they are finding fault looking for minor mistakes and saman you. Worst they miss out the bigger offenders like what happened in the recent Bukit Gantang accident, driver with 10 over traffic summons and 2 warrant of arrest can escape law. What is JPJ and traffic police been doing by the way. Need more coffee/tea tarik to keep them awake?!

  17. #17 by Libra2 on Wednesday, 15 August 2007 - 11:11 pm

    By the way, is clamping a car legal?
    If the car is obstructing, then it should be clamped. It should be towed away. If the car can be clamped then it couldn’t have been any obstruction.

  18. #18 by Jonny on Thursday, 16 August 2007 - 1:58 pm

    Illegal parking is a BIG CRIME.

    Rape, Murder, Robbery is not.

    I’ve a friend who lost his belongings in a car park. Accordingly, the guard said the tape can only be rewound up to 1 hour. I could well guess is that the tapes are ‘re-recorded’ over???? Hence previous hours’ recordings are gone?

    He took things into his hands. Luckily manage to retrieve the video footage in time. Got the car number.


    Till today, the case is still opened, unsolved.

    My friend, on contrary, took things into his hands. Manage to find the address of the culprit and got back his belongings.

    He never bothered to close the case.

    He wants to see how responsive the police is. And by the way, he is not a Malaysian.

    Hence, imagine how much damage is done in today’s monkey business world where there are a lot of gobloks everywhere and even goblok who burn flag and create big hoo-hah?

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