Seat belts save lives say road safety experts after fatal Oman crash

Energy Thursday 07/September/2017 10:37 AM
By: Times News Service
Seat belts save lives say road safety experts after fatal Oman crash

Muscat: Road safety experts in Oman have reiterated the importance of using seatbelts in cars — both, in the front and back seats — after a recent accident claimed the life of an Indian expat schoolgirl.
Fifteen-year-old Shehariz Chaliakandy was killed after her family car struck a camel on the road and overturned. Four other members of the extended family who were in the car with her escaped serious injury.
Experts believe that a person’s “chances of survival are much higher” if the people are strapped in and the vehicle travels within the speed limit.
Also read: Fate took my daughter away, says father of Oman road accident victim
Ali Al Barwani, chief executive officer of Oman’s Road Safety Association, said, “You can get back many things, but once you have lost a life, it is gone forever. We hear of many unfortunate stories of people who have lost their lives because of a small measure of carelessness, but these accidents could’ve easily been avoided.
“I want to offer my condolences to this family, and hope that God will give them the strength and courage they need at this time,” he added.
“I also request all of the people of Oman to not treat wearing their seatbelts or following other safety measures as a small matter, because it can have a big effect on your life. Strap up. It doesn’t matter whether you are sitting in front or in the back seat.”
An Omani camel farm owner said there are some tips drivers should follow when they see stray camels on roads.
“The first step you take when you see a camel crossing the street is to stop and use indicators, to alert drivers behind you. When camels see cars, their typical behaviour is to run away or move aside from the vehicle but they require some time to absorb the situation and take action,” said Said Al Malki, whose family owns a camel farm.
“It might be exhausted, pregnant, or have its legs tied. Drivers must read signs, such as camel crossing signs so they slow down, as lack of attention can sometimes be the cause of accidents. And if it’s at night, it’s advisable that camel owners use safety reflective vests on their camels, which helps drivers see them at night,” he added.
Al Barwani added: “It’s dangerous to keep driving when there are stray animals on the road as motorists cannot predict what the animal’s actions will be.”