Casualty Figures!

Majid Al Suleimany

Increasing Accidents – Please Stop This Carnage!


I was reading an article in The Newspapers on Wednesday 10th February 2011, which stated the following:

Police to book drunk drivers – 
MUSCAT — Those who get onto the driver’s seat after a couple of shots at a party beware! The Royal Oman Police (ROP) is all out there to book you for multiple offences including dangerous driving and for jeopardising the lives of others on the road. Hefty fines, imprisonment, and suspension of driving licence are to follow.

I think this is a very good move and will end all those fiascos of those wanting to copy and emulate as being ‘modern and up to date – or just being nice and social’ – when actually they cannot ‘hold their drinks’ and are the worst accidents causers – especially when speeding element is added in!

After watching this traumatic video of The Egyptian demonstrations and the crying Wael Ghoneim – the hero of The Egyptian Uprising this day – I was calling this good friend of mine a CEO of a National Company – and he gave me the ‘shock of my life’ to tell me that his Executive Secretary – and a First Class High Profile lady in my books had died as another casualty figure (statistics) just recently – after asking him how she was and having not received any emails from her for quite a while. I covered this poor lady in My Books as one great person who always stood by me in offering me support, kind words and in encouragement in my books.

I never expected to cry again! For me I try best to hold back my tears very much. But failed miserably this time! I still fail whenever I remember her. This poor lady was amongst one of the ‘casualty figures and statistics’ that we read in the newspapers every week – without abating an eyelid – as the ‘usual stories’ we read in the newspapers. Or the usual pun – so what else is new?

I also did read this article by one Omani Columnist in the other newspaper titled Killer roundabout’ rings alarm bells in Mahdah – by Fahad Al Mukrashi. Every week we see also in the newspapers about road casualty figures in the newspapers – but as usual in the coming story we never imagine or visualize that it could be someone we know well or related to.

It seemed that an Omani family of 5 adults and 5 children had decided to get into a saloon car and drive all the way to Abudhabi. They decided to have lunch there and then decided to return on the same day. At 21:30 hrs, the father of the family perhaps overlooked   the Mahadha round about and caught by surprise – he panicked and braked sharply – and rolled over. Six members of the family died immediately but the father escaped with minor injury because he was wearing a seat belt and was alone behind the wheels.

This is not the first time for me. Actually a long time ago when I was working for this National Prestigious Project – as A Human Resources Consultant and Specialist- as The Head of Recruitment it was my privilege and prerogative to call those identified as Potentials for the high jobs and echelons myself – instead of delegating it to my subordinates who normally did the main chunk of calling and for arranging for interviews and tests.

I remember this incident very clearly to this day. When I called the Mobile Number I was not able to get through. So I called instead the alternative home telephone number. Imagine the gasp at the other end when the person identifying herself as the Mother blasted me instead. Are you serious? Are you crazy? What is wrong with you? Followed by highly peeked emotional uncontrollable crying at the other end! I had to apologise profusely because the person I was calling to had actually died as another casualty figure (statistics) in a holiday just that week.

I know of a family coming from Dubai who saw an accident in Sohar. In their hurry to reach Muscat – they did not stop to watch the accident – especially when told someone had died in the accident. Reaching Muscat they found family gathered at home – the person who had died was their own son too!

There are many lessens to learn from these accidents happening now – and we should not be complacent and blame our wrong doings and mistakes just on destiny and fate. That is to be always fatalistic in approaches – and blaming fate as the cause and on our destiny. We need to be careful and pay attention – as fate and destiny is an ocean and can cause and lead to effect – and to both shape our outcomes and destiny.

It is very imperative and important to urge every family to take care and caution on the roads – and never overload small vehicles, over speed and ignore the road signs.

I would even suggest that night driving be restricted unless really urgent and necessary! Also families should be urged to start practicing using back seat belts – for everyone – and especially for the children.

Never keep the baby or child on the front seat as we have seen them demonstrated and in live examples of ‘flying out of the car’ in case of accidents. And never take things for granted and surety – as we are taught always in Defensive Driving Techniques!

I am not going to touch on speeding – DUI – driving under the influence – or using GSMs and Mobiles – especially SMSing – because enough has been said on this already.

This article is dedicated to Late Miss RAW and her family – who had perished in that terrible accident in the Mahdah roundabout accident in The National Day holidays in December 2010. She was a great lady – always beaming with smiles and with kind words and comfort to everyone – always helpful. I know because I worked with her – and as said in the beginning.

May Allah God keep her soul and family in eternal peace in this world and the eternal world – and open the gates for the highest of heavens for them – Amin.