Is There a Rule or Regulation That Prevents a Short Person from Driving?
Most people like to drive. That’s why even before reaching 17, which is the permissible age allowed by “law” to learn driving in Malaysia, students pester their parents daily regarding “driving lessons”.
Students not yet 17, care more about knowing how to drive than they bother about the forthcoming SPM (Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia) exam. If you don’t believe me, ask around. You will discover that what I am saying is the truth, and not a fallacy.
To learn how to drive, there are certain rules and regulations we must abide. Age is obviously one. 16 for motorcycles, 17 for cars, 21 for lorries and tractors.
Your eyesight must be good. Likewise, your hearing too but surprisingly, there is no maximum age in our Malaysian law system to prevent a driver from driving. As long as a person is capable, he or she can even drive up to 100 years old.
To learn how to drive, health wise, a person should not be an epileptic or suffer from epilepsy. Even a disabled person or O.K.U (orang kurang upaya), after being certified fit by an orthopedic surgeon, can learn to drive a car or a motorcycle.
That, I think is the beauty of Malaysian laws.
But surprisingly, this blog has received some questions from readers asking “Can an extremely short person learn how to drive?”
The average height of an adult male in Malaysia is I presume 5 feet 5 inches tall. And the ladies, should be around 5 feet 2 inches tall.
But assuming there are people who stand 4 feet 10 inches for ladies, and men, maybe below 5 feet.
You may not realise it, but for these shorter than normal people, learning how to drive becomes a problem. So, some of these people are afraid that there’s a law to prevent them from driving as their legs or feet cannot reach the pedals – the clutch, brakes and accelerator.
Let me assure you, those in this category, there exists no law to prevent these “little” or extremely short persons from taking up driving.
In case you belong to the above category of people, learn to drive in a Kancil. That solves your problem, doesn’t it?
Get a pillow to put under your seat during parking. Well, there is no regulation to say you cannot carry a pillow around if you are a driver, is there?
For your information, one of my daughters (I can’t remember which) was so attached to her pillow, she even carried it to Primary School in Standard One when she went to school.
The problem with the extremely short people is not while they are learning how to drive, but when they have already received their D or car licence (CDL). What car is suitable for them?
What if these people, say, should fancy a Volvo. You know, Volvos are European made cars, meant for tall people, Europeans especially.
Allow or permit me to quote you a “real” episode. A friend of mine, an engineer, loved the Volvo immensely. You could say he fell in love with this car. He wouldn’t contemplate buying no other car except the Volvo itself. But the problem was this man was too short for the Volvo! It was either the Volvo or he might just as well travel the LRT (Light Rail Transit).
You know how he finally solved his problem? He actually modified the pedals of the Volvo car by adding extra inches to the clutch, the brakes and the accelerator, thus enabling him to drive the Volvo eventually.
As to whether the above mentioned engineer is still driving his Volvo around, I am uncertain. To all of you who possess “height” problem, don’t despair. As they say, “if there’s a will, there’s a way”. Anyway, Napoleon Bonaparte was less than 5 feet tall, but he was a great leader!