Thursday, August 24, 2006

Put Prominent Sign Boards To Warn Visitors

Four young active Form-4 students were drowned at Pantai Dalit near Tuaran two days ago. They were amongst seventeen students from the same school, SMK SANZAC Sembulan, who went to take part in a community project, building shelters for poor children in the area (some reports said it was a mushroom shed for a blind couple).
On their way home they wanted to wash up their sweaty bodies after a hard day's work. Their teacher agreed with them, kind of rewarding them for their contribution towards community works, and detoured to the beach which is about one km away. They waded out in the seemingly calm sea to a depth of about chest high.
The teacher called out to them to get ashore and to head for home after about 15 minutes in the water. But before they could respond the sea suddenly turned rough, a huge wave washed away 6 of the students. One of them who is a strong swimmer, managed to swim to safety and another was rescued by a lifeguard from a nearby resort on a water-skii . The other 4 were drowned.
As a parent of 2 kids myself, while looking at the photos in the news papers in which crying parents hugging the dead bodies of their sons, I felt their pain deeply.
What went wrong? Like the Chief Minister, Datuk Musa Hj Aman said, "Don't allow people to swim there if it is dangeours to do so!" The local authority should have put up sign boards warning people about the dangers of possible sudden huge waves and under currents in that area. How much does it cost to plant a sign board there?
Do not blame the teacher, do not blame any parents for that matter, who takes their children to the beach. The beach is there for us to enjoy, but we must be made aware of any hiden dangers there is, so that we will avoid those areas.
If taking the children to the beach is so wrong, then why do the government still try with all means to attract foreign tourists to our beaches? Are we knowingly putting them in danger? Of course not, only certain spots are not safe to swim in, and adequate warnings should be posted in the appropriate places.
Please act now before more tragedies occur.