Call for more pedestrian crossings in Sharjah

Call for more pedestrian crossings in Sharjah

Scared Sharjah residents, worried about the fatal threat from speeding cars, are demanding the construction of pedestrian walkways in many vital commercial areas across the 


Afkar Ali Ahmed

Published: Fri 28 Dec 2012, 9:19 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 2:30 PM

Residents told Khaleej Times they fear crossing the streets where cars move at very high speeds, ignoring pedestrians crossing the road. They said the lack of pedestrian crossings would cause even more fatal accidents.

Resident Reem Abu Al Iezz said there were frequent fatal pedestrian accidents taking place along Al Buhairah Corniche Road. “Two of my friends died in this street while crossing the road due to lack of crossings.” Muezz Khan, resident of Al Majaz, said that despite the beautiful project in Al Buhairah Corniche Road where he lived, he felt living there was too dangerous as the area lacks walkways to cross the road to reach the park.

Khaleej TimesMost people said they wanted pedestrian bridges or tunnels particularly in Jamal Abdunasser Street, Al Khan and Al Qasimia, particularly in restaurant areas, and that they also require the 
same near mosques and public parks, especially Al Majaz Water Front park.

Some residents criticised the damaged wooden pedestrian bridge near Sahara Centre, demanding urgent maintenance for it to ensure the safety of the mall’s customers.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, Sharjah Municipality Director-General Sultan Abdullah Al Mualla said creating more pedestrian crossings was an important move to reduce accidents.

The municipality has already made a proposal for making crossings in a number of areas that required walkways or bridges. These included Al Majaz Waterfront and some residential areas, he said.

The initiative of the pedestrian walkway project is being taken in cooperation with Sharjah Department of Public Works (DPW) and the Sharjah Police, based on architectural designs, technical specifications and safety standards to ensure a safe passage for pedestrians. These departments study the areas in the emirate based on the population density and number of pedestrian accidents.

Department of Public Works traffic engineering director Muhsen Belwan said that following increase in pedestrian accidents and public complaints, the DWP had recently initiated five zebra crossings and built two underpasses on different roads where there had been a number of accidents involving pedestrians.

According to the Traffic Department, the number of pedestrian accidents this year had been reduced by approximately 40 per cent as compared to last year, largely due to the extra walkways, underpasses and foot bridges recently built in may areas of the city. In 2012, approximately 15 people were killed in accidents resulting from speeding vehicles and inattentive road-crossing by pedestrians, while last year there were 24 people killed in similar circumstances.

Apart from causing fatalities, such accidents also caused permanent disability in 75 people, during the past two years.

A high-ranking official at the Sharjah Police echoed the sentiment saying that the main factor in accidents involving pedestrians was a lack of suitable points to cross safely in vital areas of the emirate. “The police are making a great effort in coordination with the DPW and the municipality to address this issue. I wish that by 2013 and 2014 pedestrian bridges and crossings would be constructed in all the required areas,” he said.

More news from