Passengers on a bus on their way to Hermel on Monday experienced more than just their ordinary commute, as a landslide caused their bus to crash.
The bus, which was carrying 19 people, including 10 children, was hit with a rock on the Dinnieh road on its way back from the northern Nabaa al-Sukkar. Due to the high volume of rainfall this year, the ground is more prone to become loose from water displacement, thus causing landslides around the country.
Luckily, the 19 people were able to be freed and saved, thanks to the efforts of the Lebanese Red Cross. Led by Emergency Medical Services Director Abdullah Zogheib, the operation took about three hours in total to remove the passengers from the bus.
The passengers were then transported to Hermel, where they were given food and water and checked for any injuries.
As a result of many of these landslides, residential areas and roads have been cut off due to the rubble in the way.
Back in March, the Tarshish-Zahle road experienced three landslides within three days, causing destruction and inaccessibility to roadways. However, according to Assaad Zogheib, Mayor of Zahle, these landslides were caused by neighboring quarries not far from the site of the landslides rather than by rain.
Other landslides have been reported in areas such as Chekka and Hermel during the winter season.
Yet, most of the time, the necessary preparations are taken to prevent injuries or casualties by these natural events. Moreover, in the case of these 19 bus passengers, the Lebanese Red Cross was hasty to respond to the accident and successfully extracted everyone safely.
It is important to be aware of road conditions before setting out on any journey, especially given this past wet winter and the higher likelihood of landslides. We urge everyone in Lebanon to be careful out there on the road.