Please leave 9999 for genuine emergency calls only, requested Lt Col Faisal al Hajri, Director of National Emergency Management Centre, speaking to the Observer while urging the public to adhere to safety measures as Dhofar Governorate faces Mekunu.
“This is a cyclone and children should not be outside their house and families should not be driving around. The situation and the results of the Cyclone Mekunu is exactly how it has been predicted. We are seeing the water level rising and it is expected to rise, causing significant hazards to the residents of the governorate. The entire governorate especially the low lying areas, wadis, coastal areas are all under the impact of the cyclone,” he said.
The traffic flow in Salalah is almost nonexistent. The roads are over flooded with water added with strong winds.
“We appeal to the public to stay in their homes and indoors wherever they are. Keep their windows and doors locked and keep listening to advices from the authorities and adhere to them. We are unfortunate to have lost a child due to a steel gate falling on her due to the strong winds. We must avoid such hazards as there are flying debris along with the heavy rain and wind.
“We have put so much effort in this whether it is for preparedness, evacuation or providing shelter. We have evacuated thousands of people. Tremendous efforts have been exerted to make sure everybody is safe and out of the impact of the cyclone, but unfortunately some people do not adhere to these precautions. This is also dangerous for our search and rescue teams. There is no reason for people to step out of the house, stay in the lower areas or drive around,” pointed out Lt Col Faisal.
I request our fellow citizens to cooperate. There have been several rescue operations held. We had to respond to several calls. “Our rescue teams and crews have taken risks to respond to the calls so we request the public to not to take the risks,” Lt Col Faisal added.