Clinic to be opened on King Fahd Causeway

June 27, 2012

Bahrain and Saudi Arabia are considering a plan to open a clinic on the King Fahd Causeway that links the two kingdoms.

The clinic, to be set up on the Bahraini side of the artificial island border station used for police and customs checks, will provide basic medical services to passengers in need of treatment.

The significance of the clinic is regularly highlighted during peak usage of Bahrain’s only terrestrial link by Bahrainis and Bahrain-based foreigners going or coming back from Umrah and Haj (pilgrimage).

The causeway, the longest bridge in the Arab world, is one of the busiest traffic areas between Arab countries.

According to official figures, more than 18 million people a year use the 25-kilometre causeway, opened in November 1986 by the late King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz and the late Emir Shaikh Eisa Bin Salman Al Khalifa.

“The average number of passengers is around 50,000 a day while the number of cars is 23,000,” Badr Bin Abullah Al Ataishan, King Fahd Causeway Authority director-general, said. “Around 5,000 employees work in three shifts on the causeway,” he said.

Under the plan discussed in Manama by Sadiq Al Shihabi, the health minister, and Al Atishan, Bahrain will technically oversee the clinic and the causeway authority will fund the operating costs, including the salaries of medical and paramedical staff and the ambulance crews.

Drivers who use the causeway pay a 2 Bahraini dinar (Dh19.2) or a 20 Saudi riyal (Dh19.5) fee, but no charges are imposed on passengers, regardless of their numbers.

Authorities in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia have recently issued statements about increasing the number of lanes for cars, busses and trucks to help deal with traffic congestions, particularly during the weekends and holidays.

Several Saudi Arabia-based Saudi nationals and foreigners who work or study in Bahrain commute daily while a large number of Bahrain-based expatriates and Bahrainis use the causeway daily to go to their work or universities.

The causeway is also used by trucks, mainly from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the UAE, heading towards Bahrain to deliver or load products.

Queues of long vehicles are often seen at the entrance or exit of the causeway.




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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