UAE: Accident victims recall shock, fear after crash in new survey

Some respondents reported being unconscious or physically unable to call for assistance



Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied
by

A Staff Reporter

Published: Tue 15 Mar 2022, 3:42 PM

Two out of three respondents to a survey sought someone for comfort and to calm them down after a car accident. Anxiety and shock were called out as the most prominent emotions after a crash, with one in five respondents reporting that they were in shock and unable to make a decision on how to react.

This came as RoadSafetyUAE partnered with OnStar, the in-vehicle safety and security technology from General Motors, to conduct a study into the psychological impact of car accidents on drivers and passengers in the UAE.

In a Press statement, RoadSafetyUAE said the survey results were based on “qualitative interview sessions” with 46 UAE-based respondents. The participants revisited an emergency on-road incident, “sharing their emotional response in the immediate aftermath of the incident”.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied

The Press released described an expat Arab female’s shock to an accident: “I was panicking and didn't know what happened so suddenly, so I was just shaking.”

Some respondents reported being unconscious or physically unable to call for assistance. Some respondents also reported a lack of recollection in the immediate aftermath of the incident.

When asked what support the accident victims would have wanted in that moment, the initial response was emotional over medical. An expat was quoted as saying: “I think human interaction would have been very helpful since I was really scared.”

Seventeen of the accident victims interviewed also reported wanting to speak to a friend, spouse or family member for reassurance and emotional support in the immediate aftermath.

Safety first

One in three respondents reported feeling either extremely satisfied or satisfied with the existing safety features in their vehicle.

Respondents also indicated interest in more technology features that can support before an accident to prevent it or after to support the victims through it. When prompted on how the vehicle itself could support in the moment, some respondents mentioned the inclusion of technology to be embedded in the vehicle that alerts emergency services to the situation and proactively sends for support, without human intervention.

An Emirati male living in Dubai was quoted as saying: “A technological feature that could be helpful in case of emergencies would be an automatic caller system to the police/ambulance, and automatic instructions on what to do next.”

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Thomas Edelmann, founder and managing director of RoadSafetyUAE, said: “We wanted to understand the experience of accident victims right after the incident, including their accident-related predominant emotions and needs at the time, as well as how they evaluated the support that they received.

“We also wanted to understand their reactions to the concepts of connected cars and human/live advisor support in emergency situations, alongside what ‘vehicle safety’ in general means to them to identify the main fears they face on the roads after their accidents.”

Gary West, managing director, OnStar and Future Mobility General Motors Africa and Middle East, said: “With the results from this research, we will be able to support our members by understanding the state of their psyche and providing support until emergency responders arrive on scene.”

sahim@khaleejtimes.com


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