Rescue personnel have retrieved some 235 vehicles that had got stuck on beaches and sand dunes in the Sealine and Khor Al Udeid areas over the past few months.
The vehicles either got stranded in the sand on beaches and dunes or got stuck in the water during high tide, according to local Arabic daily Arrayah.
The personnel belong to a special rescue team that is part of the Natural Reserves Sector at the Private Engineering Office. The team has played a key role in rescuing visitors and their vehicles on beaches and dunes since its formation three years ago.
Many motorists land in tricky and dangerous situations as they are not fully aware of the nature of such areas as well as the capabilities of their vehicles, according to the rescue team. Most requests for help come from expatriates and youngsters, with their numbers increasing significantly during weekends and holidays.
Mohamed Hassan Abdulkhaliq, an officer at the Khor Al Udeid protectorate, said the rescue team is made up of 10 highly-skilled inspectors. The team is prepared to receive requests for help round the clock through its hotline or reports transferred by the police. Accordingly, the team members would reach the site within a few minutes.
He stressed that the team is equipped with the necessary tools and equipment to handle all kinds of situations, including towing vehicles from dangerous areas.
Saleem Qadri, an officer at the Sealine protectorate, said his rescue team comprises nine highly-qualified inspectors and maintains close co-ordination with the Rescue Police (Al Fazaa). He advised beach-goers to be equipped with tools such as towing wires, batteries, emergency lights, etc. Besides, they should be careful about the movement of seawater, particularly low and high tides.
Requests for help are received on 33590909 for the Sealine area and 33570707 for Khor Al Udeid.
The rescue team offers its services free of charge to visitors in the southern parts of the country and help them in critical situations. This service saves visitors from being exploited by some people who may charge between QR5,000 and QR10,000 to offer help in such situations.