Manama: Seven members of a family, six siblings and their mother, were killed in a horrific accident on the Sabya road in southwestern Saudi Arabia when their car collided with a heavy truck.
Initial investigations concluded that the accident was caused mainly by the terrible condition of the asphalt of the heavily frequented road.
“The Operation Room received information at 11:38 am on Tuesday that a car carrying eight members of a family collided with a truck,” Bishi Eisa Al Sarkhi, the spokesperson for the Red Crescent in Jazan, said.
Four ambulances were promptly dispatched to the site of the accident and the crews confirmed that death of passengers, including three, he said, Saudi news site Sabq reported.
The car and truck drivers were also taken to hospital for medical treatment, he added.
Witnesses said that the road was not well-maintained in some places due to the heavy traffic by trucks carrying rocks from the nearby mountains.
A few hours after the tragic accident, the transportation ministry tasked companies with fixing the Sabya road and filling its potholes in a bid.
“This should have been done months ago,” one witness told Sabq.
“Why should they leap into action only after a tragedy kills a whole family? It is easy to fix roads, but what is also needed is to fix the situation of the poor father who lost six children in a tragic accident that could have been avoided.”
Some residents in the area reported they had contacted the head of roads in Jazan two months earlier to inform him about the ominous risks and ask him to help look after the road.
“He promised to fix them, but nothing was done,” they said.
Sabq reported late on Tuesday that Transport Minister Nabeel Al Amudi sacked the head of roads in Jazan Mohammad Al Hazmi and ordered an investigation into the whole situation and the accident that would include several officials and contractors.