Kuwait MPs press for probe into highway tragedy

January 27, 2010

Car that caused the tragedy- Inset: one of the injured - Al Rai

Kuwaiti MPs are pressing the government to investigate alleged shortcomings in preventing the highway tragedy that killed five Kuwaitis and critically injured many people.

“There is information that a Kuwaiti national had called the police to tell them about the crowd gathering to watch a car race on the Doha highway. He called about 25 minutes before the tragedy, but it seems that no action was ever taken by the police, and we demand a full probe into what really happened,” MP Mohammad Al Hayef said.

The caller, Rajan Salem, the uncle of one of the victims, said that he reported seeing around 30 cars getting ready for a race on the highway and that he called the police.

“I called them at 11.27 pm, but they did not take my warning seriously. Around half an hour later, a relative called me to tell me that my nephew had died,” he was quoted as saying by Al Rai daily.

“The fact that they took the warning lightly has resulted in the death of five young Kuwaiti men and in the hospitalization of many more. The interior ministry should run more patrols in areas where young people get together,” Al Hayef said.

MP Saad Al Khanfoor urged security forces to monitor more closely zones used by young people to show off in their cars or engage in illegal activities.

“The interior ministry should be much more forceful in tackling such problems. We do not want a repeat of any tragedy and a thorough investigation is truly needed,” MP Waleed Al Tabtabai said.

The midnight accident happened when a driver lost control of his overspeeding car and ploughed into around 50 spectators watching the race from the sideline. Hospital sources said that the injured were between 18 and 25 and that four were in a highly critical condition.

According to Kuwaiti media, the racing car driver has survived the accident and is being held by the police following his treatment.









About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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