Traffic Safety Expo 2012 concludes successfully
- Oman: Saturday, October 20 - 2012 at 12:59
- PRESS RELEASE
The Traffic Safety Expo 2012 witnessed a successful close on 18th October, 2012. As part of the closing ceremony awards were presented to the participating ministries and sponsors at the event by ROP Dean Engineer / Mohamed Bin Awad AlRawas, Director General of Traffic and the names of the winners were announced entitling them to a Mitsubishi Lancer and a Toyota Yaris.
Under the theme of Safety is everybody's responsibility, some of the participating organisations at the Traffic Safety Expo 2012 displayed creative techniques of making people aware of the importance and need for safety.
Zubair Automotive Group displayed the importance of wearing seatbelts and covered two target audiences: children, through making them play an interactive play station game and adults through a voting system and free photography session.
Petroleum Development of Oman (PDO) and the Traffic Safety Institute on the other hand chose a more physical manifestation of the same message through a seatbelt convincer and a rollover simulator respectively.
The seatbelt convincer has been convincing people about the importance of seatbelts for 8 plus years. The convincer depicts the impact a person would feel when crashing at 7 km/hr. Mr. Saud Al Harthi, Team Leader, Road Safety Team, PDO said of the seatbelt convincer, "Around 500 people attempted to try the seatbelt convincer last year. This year I think we may have had more. Through this people understand the importance of seatbelts because the impact is very serious at 7 km/hr. So if we are thinking of driving at 120km/hr without seatbelts and we meet with an accident imagine the state of the passenger."
Mr. Al Harthi would jokingly tell seatbelt convincer attempters that he would pay anyone R.O 20 if they would attempt the procedure at 7 km/hr again without seatbelts. Predictably he had no takers.
On the other hand the rollover simulator by the Traffic Safety Institute gave attempters the feeling of what they would experience if their car overturns at 360 degrees. Since attempters experience discomfort through the rollover simulator without even crashing into an obstacle it is no surprise that not many people survive heavy impact accidents that lead to rollovers.
Mr. Mudhar Abdul Malik Al Mazroui, Head of Training Department, Traffic Safety Institute, said, "We are using the simulator to explain how people would feel in case of a rollover. Accidents happen everyday but people are not aware about the safety features inside the vehicle. One of the most important and cheapest features inside the vehicle is the seatbelt. There are 3 types of accidents, the first is when the vehicle crashes into another thing, maybe a stationery object or another vehicle or a pedestrian. The second type of accident is where the human body is caused to move inside a vehicle, either the driver or passenger; this causes more damage than the first type as the human body moves at the same speed as the vehicle once it stops. The third accident is where the organs of the body are so affected that they crash into each other. So we try to make people understand that when you use seatbelts you can save yourself from all these three accidents as even when the vehicle moves at 360 degrees, the seatbelt will keep your body firmly fixed inside the vehicle."
An interesting element of the exhibition included a display by the Governorate of Muscat (Al Amerat) stall which included a handmade model of the Al Mahaj roundabout where the stall representatives through the model were making a proposal suggesting the roundabout be converted to a traffic signal to ease the flow of traffic and reduce accident rates in that region.
Ms. Rayada Marhoon Al Akhazami from the Traffic Safety Committee, Al Amerat working at the stall, commented, "This roundabout is the cause of major accidents and traffic congestion because it is the meeting point of four intersections i.e. Al Amerat, Sur-Quruyat, Bausher and Wadi Hatat. More than 30,000 residents live in Al Amerat itself. Because of the heavy traffic caused by vehicles, students attend either morning or evening school sessions. For this reason we have requested a flyover under which will be a traffic signal to ease flow of traffic."
One truly breathtaking aspect of the expo was the emergency vehicle display conducted by the ROP situated at the rear end of the exhibition at different timings.
Corporal Mahmood Al Riyami, Operations Management, Civil Defence explained the features of some of these vehicles, "The Mobile operation vehicle from Civil Defence, is used for big fires, earthquakes, landslides, explosions, cyclones etc. This vehicle resembling a small operation room is equipped with camera and internet and can send every detail to the Operation Centre of Civil Defence. The Rescue Equipment vehicle is relatively new and is used for rescue operations; this vehicle's main feature involves replenishing oxygen cylinders of other emergency vehicles in case of fires, explosions etc when the oxygen supply gets depleted. The Mercedes Sprinter is a mini fire fighting and rescue vehicle used in case of small car fire accidents. The Diving equipment vehicle equipped with diver related equipment is used for diver rescue operations and accidental drownings. The National Search and Rescue Team Vehicle equipped with cutters, cameras, spotlights etc has the official status of being able to perform operations in other countries needing support."
The Traffic Safety Expo with an active participation by over 75 local and international exhibitors was organised by Oman International Trade and Exhibitions (OITE) in cooperation with the Royal Oman Police (ROP).
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