Crowds spotted at ferry terminals


It’s understandable to want to get some fresh air as travel restrictions are eased, with many states moving from the Movement Control Order (MCO) to Recovery MCO (RMCO) mode. But yesterday, on 11th March, crowds were spotted at ferry terminals for passengers travelling between Langkawi, Kuala Kedah and Kuala Perlis. The photos circulating on the Internet have been raising concerns among the public about relapsing into another round of the MCO, with the lack of physical distancing seen between passengers.


Long queues at ferry terminals


Several photos of the throng of crowds travelling between Langkawi, Kuala Kedah and Kuala Perlis at ferry terminals were shared to Facebook page, Langkawi Kini, in 2 separate posts, with captions asking travellers to strictly follow SOPs. From the photos, it also seemed physical distancing measures were not observed.

While the state of Kedah is still under Conditional MCO (CMCO), the district of Langkawi has been classified to be in RMCO, so travelling to and from the island is possible if you are from a state that’s also under the RMCO. However, it is not stated in the posts where the passengers came from, or whether they were travelling to, and whether it’s for tourism purposes. 

Crowds at Langkawi Ferry Terminal - crowds
Kuala Kedah Jetty
Image credit: Langkawi Kini

As the post got shared widely, other netizens have also come out to the comments section of Langkawi Kini’s posts to share photos of traffic jams near the terminals, and long lines of cars parked by the roadside. 

Crowds at Langkawi Ferry Terminal - crowds
Langkawi Jetty
Image credit: Langkawi Kini

However, there were also photos showing that not all was lax in SOP adherence with the crowds, as despite the massive queues shown previously, there were passengers inside the ferry terminals who were photographed seated and adhering to the gap seating guideline. 

Crowds at Langkawi Ferry Terminal - crowds
Image credit:
Langkawi Kini


260 roadblocks in place to monitor interstate travel


Crowds at Langkawi Ferry Terminal - roadblock
Image credit: Polis Diraja Malaysia ( Royal Malaysia Police )

Even though some of the interstate and interdistrict travelling guidelines have been loosened, we need to take into account that daily COVID-19 cases are still in the 4-digits in Malaysia. To keep the pandemic under control, additional efforts to curb interstate travellers are also in place. There are currently 260 roadblocks placed at state borders to weed out private vehicles attempting to travel between states without a police permit, as reported by The Star

36,000 police personnel, as well as Malaysian Armed Forces and RELA members, will be found at these roadblocks. Erring on the side of caution, they will also be paying random visits to businesses and public spaces as well to check on the public’s adherence to SOPs. 

This comes after Malay Mail reported that members of the public were giving “flimsy excuses when trying to cross the state borders” and that there were “complaints that some police officers had been lax in manning some state border checkpoints”.


Crowds spotted at Langkawi ferry, and more roadblocks to curb interstate travel are set up


We are all excited about the possibility of travelling again since the government announced that those living in RMCO states can now travel to other states for tourism purposes. But we should not, in our excitement, forget to adhere to SOPs, such as physical distancing and wearing our masks, to continue to help contain the spread of COVID-19 on our shores. 

Read more news here: 


Cover image adapted from: Langkawi Kini

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Follow The Smart Local Malaysia on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Telegram for more stories like this. If you have a story to share, email us at pressmy@thesmartlocal.com.