Maj Gen Mohammad Saif Al Zafein speaking at the Hamdan Sports Complex in Dubai. Image Credit: Courtesy: Dubai Police

Dubai: Dubai Police broke the Guinness World Record for the largest gathering for a natural disaster awareness lecture in one location on Monday, totalling 1,797 people.

Organised by the Disasters and Crisis Management Department of Dubai Police and attended by school and university students as well as government employees, the lecture was held at the Hamdan Sports Complex and raised awareness about fog.

Major General Mohammad Saif Al Zafein, Assistant Commander-In-Chief of Operations at Dubai Police, received the certificate confirming the record from Samer Khalof, an official adjudicator and project manager of the Guinness World Records, in the presence of other officials and officers.

Al Zafein praised the achievement and thanked the audience and the lecturer — Lieutenant Colonel Al Shaikh Majid Al Muala — who made the presentation and answered questions from the audience.

“It is a new achievement for Dubai Police which will be added to its list of achievements,” said Al Zafein. “The Disasters and Crisis Management Department of Dubai Police did an outstanding job in organising the lecture to break the record.”

Lieutenant Colonel Al Muala gave the lecture and explained how foggy weather causes fatalities and damage.

He said foggy weather can reduce visibility to between 1,000 and 3,000 metres, causing a danger to aviation, traffic and shipping.

“Concerned authorities should spread awareness about how to deal with fog to reduce traffic accidents,” said Al Muala. “Text messages for the public, and announcing the latest weather condition on the radio and through media helps to reduce the danger of fog.

“Dubai Police have a traffic plan to reduce accidents during foggy weather. It is a Dubai Police strategic plan to reach zero deaths among 100,000 people by 2020,” he added.

The record

Maj Gen Mohammad Saif Al Zafein receives the Guinness World Record certificate from Samer Khalof. Image Credit: Courtesy: Dubai Police

The record was for the greatest number of people attending and participating in a natural disaster awareness lesson at a single venue and was attended by a group of instructors and students of unlimited size. The previous record was set in the US and was attended by 1,500 people, but it was not official. A natural disaster awareness lecture is designed to raise awareness about natural disasters that pose a danger to life, such as earthquakes or floods.