As Car Horns Prove to be of Dangerous consequences on people’s phsycialogical conditions and hearing abilities STOP THIS NOISE!!! [Archives:2000/06/Focus]

February 7 2000

Jalal Al-Shara’abi
Yemen Times
Many are the bad phenomena that annoy us everyday and everywhere, whether in the streets or at our work sites. One of the most disturbing of such phenomena is the deafening noise of horns blown by truck, cars and various types of vehicles.
Such a distressing phenomenon does not only trouble us, Yemenis, for we may have become used to it, however, its terrible consequences have reached tourists, foreigners and visitors who come to explore the beauty of our country, have an unforgettable experience and enjoy the lovely outdoors atmosphere.
Is this noise a way of expressing the motorists welcome? I wonder.
Many foreigners have complained about this. One of them came to the headquarters of Yemen Times and said ‘I can never stand this noise. It is horrible. Please do something to stop it. I’m ready to go to the people in charge in the traffic offices to complain officially about this so that they attend to the matter seriously and do something to stop this farce. Otherwise, I am ready to leave the country renouncing my job here. I will try to look for another quiet place, where I can live peacefully far from cars’ horns.’
The absence of law and order and the delinquency of applying laws Ñ if ever existed Ñ makes many motorists take all things lightly and drive the way they like, speed up or slow down whenever they like. They blow their horns in a manner very disturbing to pedestrians in streets and even those at their homes. All this is done under the nose of the people in charge of traffic who never move a finger to put an end to such stupid behavior. Moreover, sometimes we find that it is those supposed to keep the laws are themselves who breach it, for there are some uncultured and unruly drivers driving police or military cars tend to abuse their positions by breaching laws and creating chaos as a matter of showing off in the public. Obviously no one will dare to change this.
The issue poses great dangers, for bus drivers have made streets and turning points as parking lots to wait for passengers leading to traffic jams and at many times to dreadful traffic accidents that have increased sharply these days. Some of these drivers are rather obstinate for they sometimes stay in these traffic circles and streets for a long time and never leave until their buses are full with passengers. By this they create traffic congestion’s on these streets, eventually hindering the passage of people as well as other vehicles. On the other hand, a horrible unbearable noise happens as a result of blowing horns.
This situation has led to many question marks, disinclination and dissatisfaction among people. The unruly behavior of some drivers has reached the limit as we see some of them adopting new ways and techniques to escape from being stuck in any street by sounding official horns such as those of the police cars or ambulances.
A foreign tourist told Yemen Times that “Blowing horns have become absolutely irrational. It is a never ending process of continuous noise.” Bus drivers have started using noisy amplifiers in all the places and always. Besides, one frequently sees big vehicles and lorries in streets at noon time that is not at all allowed. This distinctly increases street jamming. The people suffering from these cars are a lot, especially those living in the first floors to the extent that they sometimes could hardly sleep well.
A patient in the surgery section of the Republican Hospital named Khaizaran Husain said “Horns have almost become a terrible headache agitating our minds and trying our nerves. We can hardly sleep for the Hospital is so close to one of the main streets in Sana’a. Motorists never stop sounding their horns to our disturbance and pain and no one moves a finger to stop this.”Dr. Mohammed Abduh Al-Kamali, a surgeon doctor in the hospital said “The main reason behind the spread of this phenomenon is the negligence and ignorance of traffic authorities. It is also owing to the social order that drivers have been used to. The state of illiteracy prevailing in our society has also an impact. If we – hale and healthy – are disturbed much by such noise, let alone patients who need to have a quiet and peaceful atmosphere.
All the traffic laws in countries all over the world have banned blowing horns next to hospitals, schools, however the situation in our country is different.”
Abdul Kader Abdullah Taher, sales manager at Al-Motanawa’h Company of Hail Saeed Group said “Sounding horns in the way some drivers do is related much to culture and the reactions of people in society towards things around them. It is true that we frequently have traffic jams to the extent that driving at times becomes almost difficult, however, this does not justify all that annoyance some drivers make. For there are many international capitals where traffic jams are more frequent to happen than in Sana’a and still things are organized and it is not allowed to blow horns in such wild way. Therefore, what I believe is that there are some drivers feel content and relieved by disturbing others.”In any country all over the world one can enjoy his time sitting at any place where nothing will disturb him. Cars pass peacefully and quietly. Horns are used only when necessary and in an organized proper way. However, the case is different in our country.
Vehicles’ owners tend to explain the matter in their own way making excuses and justifying their blowing of horns for different reasons such as the nature of their work, the narrow and small streets we have, some drivers’ misunderstanding of order, besides the absence of sense of responsibility and taste among some drivers to respect others and be considerate of their feelings. To come close to the heart of the matter, I came to ask a mini-bus driver why drivers sound their horns in that way. He said “We do that for a number of reasons; the surrounding circumstances of our work. That is, sometimes we blow horns to attract the attention of passengers and sometimes to warn people who walk carelessly and aimlessly without being conscious of anything around. There are around 3000 minibuses in Hadda Street alone so it is natural that we blow horns.
The absence of specific law and order that is applied to all equally without fear or favor. Wildness of some drivers and their misunderstanding of being civilized and hit and miss policy of some drivers all are some reasons that help increase the occurrence of such phenomenon. We are not only the ones who blow horns more than often but there are also some drivers who own fancy and fabulous cars and want to show off in streets therefore they blow horns always when and when not necessary. Therefore, you find most of us have big horns to sound so that we can avoid making contravention’s and accidents. When other drivers see us do this they started following suit aimlessly without any constraints and laws that will put an end to these violations. The chaos prevailed as a direct result of the non-existence of strict laws that are enforced on all. For example when the traffic week is inaugurated, we find that traffic officers come to check whether you have horns or not, they never try to organize drivers giving them instructions how to drive according to rules in different places. 
However, whatever they do they do it for the sake of finding some faults on you or with your papers so that they could get some money.”Mr. Samir Nagi Saeed, psychological teacher, spoke about the effects of this phenomenon and said “There are many abnormal phenomena in our society that are encountered by anyone from the time he gets out of his house to the time he reached work or any other place. We for example find many people smoke in mini-buses paying no attention to the people around them. Bus drivers also keep waiting at each street corner or traffic circle making people reach late to their works and leading to traffic jams. All this tarnishes the image of the traffic office that is playing the role of a bystander or on-looker.”
Many people are blaming the traffic offices for all the chaos that has spread in our cities. Traffic Office is the concerned organization and the one that organizes all this stuff. So I met with one of those traffic officers Mr. Ahmad Saleh Omar who said “All the people are blaming us for this noise though we are the most disturbed by it. Some drivers start giving way to their horns before the light is red. The noise is not only made by the buses, it is actually more by the police and government cars and that of those well-to-do. Besides many sheiks accompanied by a good number of armed tribesmen never respect the laws of traffic and adhere to it. These influential people are also another source of trouble and noise more than any other ones.”Yahya Zaher, general manager of the Traffic Administration said “It is quite difficult to completely control this. The solution lies in the hands of all the people; the drivers as well as the passengers. All of them should be considerate of others. For example, passengers should respect others by not smoking in buses. This can be done without passing any laws.
Regarding blowing horns it is true that drivers are doing that in T-junctions and everywhere they go in a terrible way, however, if we launch a campaign to punish and arrest those doing that, we will arrest and punish all and this is almost impossible.
In fact, the media is also responsible for this, for they have to launch a campaign against such behavior and to raise the public awareness.”
This was the answer of the person in authority when we contacted and asked him about the procedures conducted to stop such abnormal behavior. However, it seems that such phenomenon will continue to exist. This makes us wonder “Who Could Stop Disturbing Cars’ horns?”