Mandatory barrier installation will help save lives, says petrol station managers
AJMAN // Petrol station managers in Ajman agree that barriers will help save lives, after police said it would become mandatory to have them in place at commercial premises.
The move by police and Ajman Municipality to require iron bollards at all filling stations, restaurants and cafes that have glass facades followed the death of a 45-year-old Asian woman and a nine-year-old Arab boy on Sunday, when a 22-year-old Emirati driver suffered an epileptic fit at the wheel of his pick-up and ploughed into a McDonald’s restaurant at an Eppco station.
Six others were injured.
Mohammed Ali Al Matrooshi, a manager at an Adnoc station in Al Rashidiya 1, where barriers are in place, said they were a good idea.
“They will not prevent crashes but they will reduce the damage and protect the lives of people inside the shops and restaurants,” he said.
“These barriers [at his station] are strong. And if a car crash occurs, it may collide with the fence and glass window but will not go inside, so the damage will be less.”
However, Mr Al Matrooshi said that the new rules should include residential areas, too.
“Authorities should take into account small groceries that are close to the street and have no space to instal barriers,” he said.
Mr Al Matrooshi has never witnessed a severe crash at his station, but he said: “We had problems with the sidewalks in front of the shops as vehicles collided with them and crashed into the glass but [they have] never entered the shop, because of the iron barriers.”
Navraj Adhikari, manager at Emarat petrol station in Al Jurf, Ajman, hoped they will be installed at his workplace.
“These barriers must be installed because they are safer. Most Emarat petrol stations have metal barriers but this one does not. I do not know why,” he said.
“There are on the street in front of the glass facades cement barriers, but they are not safer than the iron ones.
“Soon we will have iron barriers, and I am happy and feel comfortable with installing them because they protect people’s lives.”
Ajman Police and municipality are working to ensure barriers are installed across the emirate.
The municipality has formed a safety team that is responsible for taking measures to protect people from incidents such as that last week, said Mohammed Ahmed Al Muhairi, executive director of engineering affairs at the municipality.
“The tasks of the team include putting the regulations and requirements relating to the safety of people and studying security and safety measures in front of the shops,” he said.
“After installing the barriers and safety measures, the team will follow up with the places and write an update once every quarter.”
Updated: July 22, 2016 04:00 AM