Anyone who has ever visited Asia for even a short time knows that law enforcement officers in the region often take a laissez-faire attitude towards traffic violations. However, at AEC News Today, we take the matter of road safety very seriously due to the economic and social consequences (See: Playboy Bunny Fearz Poonnada Killed Drunk Driving in Thailand), and this minute-long clip shows exactly why road safety regulations needs to be enforced – because human ingenuity has its limits.
The video above shows the moments leading to an accident that happened in Bogor Regency in West Java, Indonesia. Shot from a bus by a holidaymaker on his way to Puncak — a popular weekend getaway for many Jakartans — the video shows a dangerously overloaded truck tilting at an unrecoverable angle while attempting to get through a corner, before falling onto its side.
Amazingly, a man – who can be seen sitting on top of the precariously stacked sacks in the video was not injured in the accident.
The passengers in the bus can be heard arguing about whether the man in question might be a ‘bajing loncat’ – a Sundanese term for flying squirrels – used to describe thugs who jump onto trucks before looting what they can get their hands on, throwing plundered good to waiting accomplices as the truck continues its journey. However, someone else points out that the man is actually using his weight to counter the roll of the truck; a human counterbalance.
Then, as is want to occur in situations such as this, physics kicks in and the weight of a person – particularly an Indonesia weighing in the vicinity of 50kg (about 110 lb) as a counter balance is simply not enough, and the truck falls onto its side, the human counterbalance casually sliding down the opposite side of the truck as it falls over.
This is not the first incident where a lack of judicious has caught the public’s attention. A string of fatal incidents involving passenger buses, including an incident in April this year that took the lives of 13 people, have occurred on this stretch of road that connects the Greater Jakarta region with its satellite industrial estates around Bogor and Puncak in West Java.
The lack of enforcement, complete ignorance of road safety, coupled with poor maintenance, and a winding provincial road that has yet to see an upgrade since it was constructed — sounds like a recipe for disaster.
Despite the fact that violators face harsh penalties that could include fines and/or imprisonment, traffic regulations in Indonesia are often only enforced during the lead up to and from the nearest public holidays.
Thankfully the countdown to Eid al-Adha in Indonesia is currently underway meaning visitors can breathe a sigh of relief. There should be no overloaded trucks on the roads for the next couple of weeks.
After that though, one can’t help but think things will return to normal and this won’t be the last truck to fall on its side. On a brighter note though, none of the bags appear to have fallen off the truck.
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