Minister calls for ‘accident-free Haj’
Haj Minister Bandar Hajjar conveyed to transport agents in Makkah and Madinah that he hoped for an “accident-free Haj” this year.
The minister was speaking to officials from the General Syndicate of Vehicles in Makkah during an inspection tour of services and facilities ahead of this year’s pilgrimage.
The minister met with the syndicate’s chairman, his deputies and the owners and representatives of pilgrim transport companies.
During this visit, he also inaugurated the syndicate’s operations room, field operation unit and website, which will be commissioned during this Haj.
The minister told transport agents that it is their sole responsibility to ensure that passenger coaches are safe enough to be driven on the Kingdom’s roads and their air-conditioning systems are in perfect working order.
“The drivers must be properly trained, not only on how to drive these vehicles, but how to deal with passengers courteously,” he said. They are also responsible for maintaining cleanliness inside the coaches.
“Coaches should be driven carefully and within the speed limited since passenger safety is a priority,” he said.
“There were no major accidents during last year’s Haj and we hope things remain this way this year.”
At a subsequent meeting held on Sunday, the minister told the chairman and members of the Board of Directors of the Zamazemah United Office to set up an electronic link with national “Tawafa” (Haj) establishments.
“This will help in locating pilgrim accommodation,” he said.
He requested the office to continue distributing Zamzam water among pilgrims upon arrival and departure at their places of accommodation and at hospitals.
In addition, the minister advised the company to use disposable plastic cups and bottles during distribution.
The Zamazemah United Office is also committed to providing pilgrims with Zamzam water at guidance centers on the Jeddah-Makkah highway, on the highway between Madinah and Makkah and in centers where pilgrims gather on both highways.
One 0.65-liter capacity bottle should be provided per pilgrim on arrival and another 330ml bottle on departure.