When smiling emojis greeted drivers

Since the beginning of the week, motorists in Muscat have been caught by surprise by the latest solar-powered speed detectors that indicate whether or not you are speeding through emoticons.
Motorists were quick to respond to the speed detectors installed at various places near schools and other areas requiring lower speeds.
If a vehicle’s speed was high, the emoticon would go red-faced. If it was within the specified limit, it gave a green “grin”.
The new technology on the road was a topic of discussion on the social media. Abdullah Shamsi wrote, “It is a brilliant idea.” Another person said: “Why is it only in Muscat?”
Another person’s worry was, “Does it slap fine?” Suleiman Salim wrote, “The red face makes me reduce the speed.”
But all were impressed with the new technology.
On Monday, the Royal Oman Police (ROP) tweeted: “The new feature on the roads is not part of the traffic violations system but is an awareness feature by the Traffic Safety Committee.”
Officials told the Observer this was part of a road awareness campaign by the Traffic Safety Committee. There is a road safety committee in every wilayat. The governorates choose the best of campaigns from their respective governorates for a competition on road safety conducted by the ROP.
Out of the 11 finalists, three are chosen for the top positions. The wilayats, government sector and private sector all have separate competitions.
The competition looks for the best campaigns and measures suggested
for traffic safety by wilayats, govern-
ment organisations and private sector entities.
The solar-powered speed detectors are an initiative of the road safety committee in wilayats Muttrah and Bausher.
“The initiative is a road awareness campaign and will be on for a few days. It helps you look at your speed outside instead of looking at it inside your car,” said the traffic safety expert.
Observer video (@omanobserver fb page and omanobserver.om) has noted how drivers were alerted when they exceeded the speed limit and slowed down immediately.

Lakshmi Kothaneth