A road safety training workshop conducted in Dubai recently has received overwhelming response from teachers and paramedical staff members of a number of schools in the Emirate. The ‘Train the Trainers’ workshop, addressing more than 185 responsible officers including principals and head-teachers, medical or nursing staff from 157 private sector schools in Dubai, also witnessed simulation of an accident, staged in front of Medical Library within Rashid Hospital campus.
The simulation of car crash, in order to show the fatalities an accident can cause to passengers if they are not buckled up, was organised by Aster DM Healthcare- the leading healthcare provider in the Middle East, with the support of Emirates Driving Institute (EDI), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), Dubai Corporation for Ambulances Services (DCAS) and Roads and Transport Authority (DHA). The accident mock-drill assessed the common mistakes that drivers and passengers commit while on the road.
This was part of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) driven ‘School Health and Safety Programme’ being run by Aster DM Healthcare, in association with DHA. The programme covers students across Dubai schools, aimed to educate them on road safety and help them become tomorrow’s responsible citizens. The programme will see three campaigns STRAP (Safety Tips for Road Accident Prevention), BEAT (Be Empathetic & Act Timely), and STUB IT ‘Quit Tobacco’ taking place simultaneously.
The workshop provided the school officials and staff with lessons on how to train the students on practicing healthy habits and road safety measures in life, actions to be taken during critical emergency situations, Basic Life Support (BLS), first-aid lessons and Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation awareness, in addition to creating awareness among the students on the ill-effects of smoking tobacco.
Mrs. Alisha Moopen, Director Strategies at Aster DM Healthcare, said, “The campaign aims to improve the wellbeing of students and the community through educational and practical measures on key essential health and safety issues in the society today. The awareness programme is the need of the hour. The concept urges people to follow precautions to prevent accidents, and avoid risky situations on the road. Training the good habits in their childhood would encourage the children to follow the etiquettes throughout their life.”
“We are running the campaigns to address three pertinent health and safety issues in today’s world. It’s highly significant to teach the students these measures at a very important stage in their lives, as they are the citizens of the future. They learn how to practice these important measures throughout life, which is so precious. These campaigns will help us understand the impact and repercussions of the mistakes we commit while on roads, so that to take effective steps to prevent such fatalities,” she added.
Speaking on the sidelines of the accident simulation, Mr. Mohammad Imtiyaz Mohammad, a senior instructor at EDI, said, “Road safety is an important issue and it is everyone’s responsibility to ensure that they do their part to remain safe on the road, this extends to drivers and pedestrians. Not using a seatbelt can make a small accident into a huge accident. There are far more injuries arising from this problem than most people think.”
“There are mainly five things that might endanger our lives while driving. The dangers include not wearing seatbelt, improperly wearing seatbelt, fixing headrest too high or too low, loosing objects including passengers not wearing seat belts inside the car, and unrestrained kids, who also could get killed. Everybody knows that it’s risky not to wear a seatbelt while on road, but improper wearing of a seatbelt is equally dangerous,” he added.
According to Dr. Ranjith Narayan, specialist orthopaedic surgeon at Aster Medical Centre, the most common cause of death in road accidents is head injuries. “There are different types of common head injuries including mild concussion, serious internal bleeding, neck fractures and dislocation happening due to accidents on roads. Adjusting the headrest close to head will help the driver to avoid head injuries while driving. The top end of the headrest should be on the level of the top of the drier’s head.”
“In automobile accidents, children are especially vulnerable. They are most at risk of being killed or seriously injured on the roads when they are on foot. Brain injuries can happen to them by even the lowest form of impact, if the child is not properly restrained. This can cause disabilities like paralysis and speech problems. Spinal cord injuries are some of the most devastating injuries possible for unrestrained children. Well-designed child seats with seatbelts, which can be adjusted to the size of the child, will only protect them from fatal injuries,” he warned.
Dr. Narayan said that it is important that we teach our children lessons on road safety when they are young so that they are cautious while crossing roads and so that they remain responsible when they grow up and learn to drive.
Aster DM Healthcare launched the CSR campaign in 2012, along with ‘Dr. ASTER Mobile’ clinic the first of its kind touring medical facility operational in the region. Dr. Aster Mobile facilitates the training in BLS and first aid measures. The campaigns are in the second phase now, reaching out to school students across the UAE over the next two years.
Last year, Dr. Aster Mobile Clinic provided free medical aid and health awareness to about 28,500 people of different communities in several locations of Dubai, Sharjah and the Northern Emirates. The touring clinic is currently reaching out to more people with free medical services and awareness sessions. This is in addition to covering the schools over the next two years, for implementing the school health and programme. The programme started rolling out in a number of campuses with students’ interactive sessions.
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