In the Sultanate of Oman, every adverse weather condition brings with it the temptation to cross the overflowing valleys, despite the risk it poses to one’s life and of others. Some people do it to show off, while others do it to avoid longer routes or as a matter of wrong judgement about the ensuing danger.
Such irresponsible acts have a history of many tragedies, especially during heavy rains, when most of the valleys overflow.
Although the Royal Oman Police (ROP) deploys personnel to prevent crossing vehicles and even arrest the risk-takers, there are still some who slip from the police patrols. The Civil Defence and Ambulance Authority has reported several incidents of people getting trapped in valleys due to irresponsibility and risk-taking.
To ensure public safety, the ROP and the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance have repeatedly advised against crossing valleys, paying attention to weather bulletins and taking necessary precautions to secure property. During inclement weather conditions, children must be kept away from water bodies.
The Traffic Law in the Sultanate of Oman has provisions of penalty — imprisonment for a period not exceeding three months and a fine not exceeding RO 500 or one of these two penalties for those who deliberately cross the valleys in a manner that endangers life or the lives of their passengers or others.
Despite these warnings and penalties, some people still take the risk and cross valleys, causing societal tragedies and exposing rescue teams to danger.
The authorities concerned are always on the alert, with operational plans for weather conditions, but it is necessary for individuals to take responsibility and avoid crossing valleys, no matter how urgent or necessary it may seem.
Let us all listen to the warnings and exercise constant caution during weather conditions to preserve public safety.
The ROP firmly deals with anyone who exposes him or others to the danger of crossing valleys, especially after alerts from various sources. They have started dealing firmly with the violators, who, for the sake of fun, cause societal as well as other risks.
The idea here is not to let impatience or carelessness cost lives and property during bad weather.