Traffic accidents claim 4,589 lives in six years

ABU DHABI — Traffic accidents claimed the lives of 4,589 people in the country over the last six years, a police study has revealed.

By Atef Hanafi

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Published: Fri 8 Sep 2006, 10:05 AM

Last updated: Sat 4 Apr 2015, 8:20 PM

According to the study, conducted by the Abu Dhabi Police’s Centre for Security Research and Studies for the period 1999- 2004, the Abu Dhabi emirate took the lead in term of serious accidents, reporting 2,371 casesrepresenting 51 per cent, followed by Sharjah with 830 accidents (18 per cent),Dubai 612 (13.2 per cent), RasAl Khaimah 294 (6.3 per cent), Fujairah 209 (4.5 per cent), Ajman 203 (4.4 per cent), and Umm Al Quwain at 120 (2.6 per cent).

In 2000, Abu Dhabi also reported the highest number of moderate injuries at 3,663 and formed 53 per cent of slight injuries.

The head of surgery at Shaikh Khalifa Medical City in Abu Dhabi said highway accidents were fatal and caused serious injuries — the most dangerous of them is paralysis among young men.

He stressed the need for launching extensive awareness campaigns to educate the public about the dangers of injuries caused by traffic accidents.

The study noted that 2004 saw the largest number of serious injuries at 878, while 1999 registered the lowest rate of injuries at 721.

This highest occurrence of accidents was attributed to the rapid increase in population, vehicles, drivers and roads.

Nationality-wise, the study showed that UAE nationals topped the list of seriously injured, accounting for 33.25 per cent (292 cases) because they owned 62 per cent ofprivate cars and 100 per cent of commercial vehicles and trucks.

“Indians and Pakistanis combined came second, forming 32.8 per cent with 724, 757, and 268 injured from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh respectively,” the study added.

Egypt, the study indicated, led the Arab countries in term of injuries, registering 175 cases. Second in line was Jordan with 99 cases. Over the six years, only 26 injuries were recorded for Europeans.

With regard to the death toll, the study said, the highest fatalities stood at 873 persons and took place in 2003, while the lowest rate of fatalities numbered 661 persons and were registered in 1999.

Again, Abu Dhabi outnumbered other emirates, registering 1,956 deaths from traffic accidents.

In Dubai, Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah, Umm Al Quwain and Ajman, the reported death toll were 1,107; 672; 235; 300; 114; and 105 respectively.

Drivers who lost their lives during accidents reached 1,970 (43 per cent) against 1,424 (31 per cent) for passengers and 1,195 (26 per cent) for pedestrians.

“The death of 167 drivers in Ras Al Khaimah alone over the period under review called for improving the road network in the emirate which also hosts a number of quarrying and plants (on the sides of main roads) that increase the possibility of traffic accidents and fatalities,” the study signalled.

In Fujairah, the study noted the rough terrain of the Masafi-Fujairah road, but admitted that excessive speed were the main cause of death of 135drivers in the same period.

“There were 1,423 (31 per cent) deaths among nationals, and 853 (16.8 per cent) and 252 (5.5 per cent) among Indian and Bangladeshi nationals respectively," the study showed.

The high percentage of death toll among the Asians gave indication to their misunderstanding of traffic rules in the country.

Fatalities among GCC nationals stood at 232. “No single case of death was registered among nationals of South America, while an Australian national was killed in a traffic accident. A total of 640 non-GCC Arab nationals were reported killed in accidents, taking to 2,272 the total death toll of the entire Arab countries, constituting 49.5 per cent.

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