A dozen lives were lost and scores injured in just a week in separate accidents in the Wilayat of Haima, off Salalah, in Dhofar Governorate, which have been attributed by experts to a host of reasons.
They are shocked at the spiraling number of road accidents despite the efforts to reduce the same.
According to Mohammed al Khadouri, an Omani trainer on safety and security at ICEM, “Multiple reasons are to be blamed for the rising number of road accidents.”
He says the “driving attitude” determines how safe a driver is. “An aggressive mindset can devastate your dream of reaching safely.”
Number 1 killer is the use of mobile phones, said Al Khadouri, citing studies that reveal mobile as a “major villain”. “A new system is needed to detect phone usage when driving.”
From the security point of view, a lax in the maintenance of vehicles is crucial, especially during summer months, when cables melt away, causing fire and other fatal accidents.
Al Khadouri cited another interesting factor: disappearance of traffic signs. There are cases where the signboards are stolen by people, causing motorists to take wrong decisions resulting in accidents.
Motorists, he said, should be aware of stray animals on the road and be prepared for such surprises. “Multi-tasking” and reckless driving have also been blamed for the rising number of accidents.
Omar al Rawahi, a Royal Oman Police (ROP) security officer, has urged motorists to follow traffic rules and regulations.
“Traffic safety is a collective responsibility. Every citizen and resident of Oman has equal responsibility in ensuring road safety,” he said.
Hilal, a defence official, suggested that ROP patrol vehicles be deployed after every five kilometres on roads susceptible to accidents.
Yousuf al Balushi, an ROP official and part of the National Traffic Safety Campaign, feels if adherence to permitted speed on the road is strictly maintained, “the rest will be easier” and help bring down the number of accidents.