Drones will be used for the first time in the Grand Mosque in Makkah to manage the crowd in Ramadan, local daily Al-Madina reported on Wednesday quoting deputy commander of the Umrah forces Maj. Gen. Mohammed Al-Ahmadi.
The Umrah crowd management plan involves security, organizational and humanitarian aspects, said Al-Ahmadi. Pilgrims or visitors who show any sign of distress will not be allowed to enter the Grand Mosque for their own safety and that of others, he said.
Al-Ahmadi said visitors or pilgrims will not be allowed to enter the Haram plazas with their luggage. In addition to drones and security aircraft, there will be about 2,500 cameras to monitor the crowd movement inside the Grand Mosque.
The security plan will be carried out by 2,400 policemen in addition to 1,300 security patrols which will be roaming the area around the Haram. Director of Makkah Police Maj. Gen. Fahd Bin Mutlaq Al-Ossaimi said there will be six stations for shuttle trips to and from the Grand Mosque.
“The Makkah Police will group pilgrims and visitors at the Grand Mosque to facilitate their entry and exit,” he added. Al-Ossaimi said the grouping operation will also include car parks near the central area and entry points to the Haram.
He said the six shuttle bus stations are Bab Ali, Ban Ajyad, Al-Ghaza, Shuab Amir, Jaroul and Reia Bakhsh.
This article was first published in Saudi Gazette.