What About the Most Deadly Virus?

WHEN we were first attacked by the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus, our media filled the world with cries. Our society began to express serious worry when it started seeing the victims falling here and there.

The concerned government departments were put on full alert. Funds were unreservedly allocated to contain the deadly virus.

A number of senior government officials were relieved because the performance of their departments was far from satisfactory during the crisis.

All these hectic movements happened even though the number of infected cases did not surpass a thousand and deaths were less than half the number.

We have a more fatal infection than the coronavirus that has graver health, social and economic implications.

This infection has been roaming freely in all cities, towns and villages, leaving behind tragedies that have spared no family.

With all these tragedies we did not do much to put an end to the wide spread of this deadly virus, which are traffic accidents.

The news about this virus has become familiar to us. We are not shocked or surprised to read that one person dies every 70 minutes in a particular province in the Kingdom from traffic accidents.

We read about this startling news and put down the newspaper as if nothing has happened. The director general of traffic in the Eastern Province spoke about 3,500 injuries and 928 deaths caused by traffic accidents in the province in 2014.

This huge figure of deaths and injuries is happening in one region only. The figure will definitely be catastrophic when we gather statistics about traffic victims in all the other provinces and regions.

Every year and on many occasions we repeat the same warnings that the victims of the traffic accidents in our country are on a steady rise but no one gives any attention or takes any action on the matter.

Our country leads the entire world in the number of road deaths and injuries. These roads are not the express or intercity roads but includes small streets in villages and alleys in the hamlets.

This is a surreal situation that has no parallel in the world. It does not happen in other countries no matter how bad their roads or streets are and whatever the culture of their societies may be.

We all remember the recent story about the car drifter in Khamis Mushayat who killed a number of spectators while performing his stunts.

This happened in a moment and in front of a number of onlookers. This shows us how cheap Man is in our country. Man has no value and his life is utterly worthless.

Every day we have instances that Man’s life has no meaning at all. This is further confirmed to us by the very fact that the number of traffic accidents is increasing instead of decreasing.

Is this a difficult puzzle for which there is no solution? Are we not able to contain this fatal virus?

There is no doubt reducing the number of traffic accidents is not an unsolvable riddle if we have the required determination and the strong will.

However we are dealing with this issue with slackness that is not commensurate with its seriousness and danger.

(Source: SaudiGazette.com.sa)

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