Saudi Arabia’s Hajj agencies ‘ready to serve over 2m pilgrims’

Updated 30 August 2017
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Saudi Arabia’s Hajj agencies ‘ready to serve over 2m pilgrims’

MINA: Agencies involved in Hajj preparations are ready to serve more than 2 million pilgrims, a senior Saudi official said.
Pilgrims have arrived in preparation for the “Day of Tarwiyah,” which falls today, said Interior Ministry Spokesman Maj. Gen. Mansour Al-Turki.
He said the Hajj plan would serve over 2 million pilgrims, including 1,747,440 who have already arrived from abroad and another 200,000 from inside Saudi Arabia, including citizens and residents.
Al-Turki stressed the efforts made at the entrance to the holy sites to detect any violations of Hajj regulations. He said more than 400,000 people have been turned away for lacking Hajj permits.
A total of 208,236 cars driven by those without the correct permits were turned away, while another 3,296 vehicles were seized at the entrances to Makkah, officials said.
Hatim bin Hassan Qadi, adviser to the minister of Hajj, announced the completion of the first phase of the pilgrim-receiving plan through the entry points in Makkah and Madinah.
He said 19,500 buses transported pilgrims from Madinah to Makkah while another 38,000 buses transported pilgrims from other areas. Pilgrims will later be transported to Mina by 9,000 buses.
Qadi affirmed the readiness of camps in Mina to receive pilgrims and said that both public and private sectors are working to serve the pilgrims.
The Hajj plan also includes myriad medical facilities for pilgrims.
Ahmad bin Rayan Barayan, general supervisor of public relations and media at the Saudi Red Crescent Authority (SRCA), said the facilities include 133 ambulance centers run by 78 physicians and specialists and 2,500 administrative employees and technicians.
He said there are 25 teams assigned for advanced response that will support field-ambulance teams, in addition to other ambulance teams.
There are four well-equipped air ambulances while 500 male and female volunteers will serve at the Grand Mosque and Arafat sites.
Health Ministry Spokesman Mishaal Al-Rabian announced the completion of the ministry’s preparations for the current Hajj season through the preparation of 25 hospitals and 155 medical centers at the holy sites. These are supported by 100 small ambulances working as mobile intensive-care units, which are capable of reaching crowded areas to attend to the injured.
Al-Rabian said 21 pilgrims who were earlier admitted to hospitals in Madinah were on Tuesday transferred to Arafat General Hospital to allow them perform the Arafat Day ritual.
He said the ministry prepared more than 285 special rooms to receive cases of heat stress and sunstroke, while medial teams carried out free-of-charge operations including open heart procedures, cardiac catheterization, dialysis and other medical services.
Civil Defense Spokesman Col. Abdullah Al-Harthi said the first phase of the emergency plan of the current Hajj season had been completed without any incident that could have adversely affected the safety of pilgrims.
He said the number of agencies involved in the emergency plan had increased from 19 to 32, with five mock incidents carried out to prepare them.


Saudi Aramco recognized as a leader in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Updated 22 January 2019
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Saudi Aramco recognized as a leader in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

JEDDAH: Saudi Aramco’s Uthmaniyah Gas Plant (UGP) has been recognized by the World Economic Forum (WEF) as a “Lighthouse” manufacturing facility and a leader in technology applications of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 
Saudi Aramco is the first energy company globally to be included in this select group of manufacturing sites. The plant is also the only facility in the Middle East to be recognized by WEF. 
The announcement was made ahead of WEFs annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland.
The gas plant is one of the world’s largest gas processing plants and was commissioned in 1981 as part of Saudi Aramco’s Master Gas System to process associated gas from oil wells. 
The use of drones and wearable technologies to inspect pipelines and machinery has helped cut inspection time by 90% in this industrial facility.
“The recognition of the Uthmaniyah Gas Plant demonstrates Saudi Aramco’s shift to transform and adapt in the rapidly changing global energy landscape. Uthmaniyah is only one part of our large integrated energy value chain where IR 4.0 technologies are playing a critical role to enable significant capital and operational efficiencies,” said Amin H. Nasser, Chief Executive Officer of Saudi Aramco.
The seven new facilities join nine other “Manufacturing Lighthouses” which WEF unveiled in September 2018. The 16 factories were selected from an initial list of 1,000 manufacturers based on their successful implementation of cutting-edge technologies of the future that drive financial and operational impact.
The “Lighthouse” program was conducted by WEF in collaboration with McKinsey during a year-long study. A study team visited UGP in Saudi Arabia and performed a thorough audit.