Friday, March 24, 2023 | Ramadan 1, 1444 H
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Campaign to tow away abandoned vehicles


Muscat Municipality has stepped up the campaign to tow away abandoned vehicles from parking slots in commercial and residential areas in the city.

Starting with the Wilayat of Al Seeb, a number of vehicles were towed away to a scrapyard to prevent the distortion of the general appearance of the city.

“As they obstruct roads and cause traffic and nuisance to pedestrians, our colleagues in Al Seeb towed away vehicles neglected at the commercial and residential areas in the wilayat, after the expiry of time period given to take them away," the municipality said in its twitter handle sharing images of the vehicles.

A number of citizens and residents reacted to the posts by bringing to fore the menace that the abandoned vehicles pose in their respective areas.

Officials have been making field visits to monitor abandoned vehicles, especially near tourist attractions, main streets, workshops, warehouses and open parking spaces.

“Some cars have been parked here for years. They are a risk to our health and safety as they may contain hazardous waste. It is time they move them,” said a response from Al Khuwair.

Speaking to the Observer, a municipality official said that the campaign aims at raising the level of awareness on the damage done by neglected vehicles to the city and its appearance.

“This also intends to promote the values of social responsibility in maintaining the sustainability of the public appearance and beauty of public utilities,” he said.

According to the official, leaving vehicles in public places unattended for a longer period of time violates the administrative decision No 171/2018 issued by Muscat Municipality.

“Articles in the decision prohibit owners of vehicles from leaving them in public places in a way that distorts the general appearance of the place while stipulating that the municipality shall place a warning poster on vehicles which are found to be abandoned," he said.

If the owner of the vehicle fails to comply, the municipality can tow away those vehicles at the expense of the owner, 14 days from the date of placing the warning poster without taking any responsibility for damage to the vehicle during transportation to the scrapyard.

According to the decision, an administrative fine of RO 200 will be imposed on owners of cars or buses that carry less than 15 passengers and bicycles. While the fine will be RO 400 for trucks, vehicles used for transporting hazardous materials will be slapped with RO 1,000. Vehicle owners will be fined RO 5 a day in case of delay.

The municipality will coordinate with the Royal Oman Police to take action to sell those vehicles in a public auction in case the owner of the vehicle fails to appeal to the municipality to take the vehicle, and pay the fees due within 90 days from the date of towing away the vehicle.

In the capital city of Muscat, it is common to see vehicles covered in dust at different parking places unattended for months, indicating they have been abandoned.


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