The Commissioner for Transport, Rosanna Law, said on Tuesday that the government is planning to introduce new legislation to hold vehicle owners criminally liable if they fail to dispose of their cars or motorcycles properly.
Speaking on an RTHK programme, Law noted that up to 90 percent of the abandoned vehicles found in the city are motorcycles.
She said the proposed legislation will close a loophole that allows owners who abandon them to get off scot-free.
Law noted that at present, if a person does not renew an expired vehicle registration, he or she will no longer be considered the owner, and will not face any liability even if the discarded vehicle occupies or obstructs public roads.
She said the new legislation, which is expected to come into effect in early 2024, will hold vehicle owners criminally liable if they fail to renew their vehicle’s registration or cancel it upon expiry, or do not apply for an exemption.
“Aside from the legal liability, we will impose a fine with deterrent effect, or even imprisonment,” said Law.
“We don’t want to punish the vehicle owners, but we would like to build up the sense of responsibility for citizens, an awareness that an owner of a vehicle – whether it’s an old or a new one – is responsible for disposing it properly, rather than just leaving it on the streets waiting for the government to clean up after you.”
Speaking on the same programme, DAB lawmaker Ben Chan said aside from legislation, different government departments must make clear who’s responsible for law-enforcement.