Dubai accelerates road safety measures
*8 people killed in road accidents in the first week of Ramadan
*RTA to reduce speed limits
Excessive speed causes 80 per cent of severe traffic accidents, according to the CEO of Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) Maitha bin Adai. The first week of Ramadan saw eight people killed in road accidents across the UAE while 66 people were injured in 48 accidents during that time, the Ministry of Interior (MoI) said in a statement on June 7.
Dubai’s RTA is undertaking new plans for traffic safety covering drivers, vehicles and roads. The authority has already taken steps to reduce the speed limits of roads that witness elevated traffic volumes.
Roads painted red to curb speeding
Dubai’s RTA has started painting certain roads red to indicate a drop in speed limit.
The move is being carried out on an experimental basis on Oud Metha Street (near Bu Kadrah Interchange) along the extension of Dubai-Al Ain Street, where the maximum speed limit has been reduced from 100 km/h to 80 km/h.
As part of the initiative, the vehicle lanes have been painted red, with triangular markings on both sides of the lane dividers displaying the speed limit. The RTA hopes the move will intensify the cautionary signs for reducing the speed on the road.
Maitha bin Adai, CEO of RTA’s Traffic and Roads Agency, said: “The process involved colouring all lanes in an eye-catching style such that the step would help in inviting the attention of road users to the new speed limit. The proposal had been developed for colouring asphalt in red at a distance sufficient for motorists to lower their speed gradually without obliging them to apply brakes suddenly.
“Asphalt colouring would be implemented in phases at locations subject to speed change in some other vital roads in Dubai gradually. Therefore, we expect motorists to get used to it for their own safety, and avoid offences and accidents resulting from overspeeding,” he added.
According to bin Adai, the initiative will next be implemented on Sheikh Zayed Road near the 5th Interchange where speed is set to be reduced from 120 km/h to 100 km/h.
It will also be applied to the Jebel Ali-Lehbab Road near Lehbab where the limit is being cut from 120 km/h to 100 km/h.
“The various development projects launched and implemented by RTA since inception have contributed effectively to decreasing the number of traffic accidents deaths by as much as 50 per cent. Traffic fatalities came down from 332 in 2006 to 166 in 2015, with mortality rate down from 21.7 deaths per 100,000 people in 2006 to 3.5 per 100,000 people in 2016. These statistics have placed Dubai among the top five cities in the world for traffic safety,” explains bin Adai.
Road safety in the UAE in numbers
1. 50 per cent of road accidents in the UAE last year were caused by drivers aged 18-30
2. The UAE witnessed road fatalities growing from 675 in 2015, to 725 in 2016
3. On a scale of one to seven, with countries scoring one having extremely underdeveloped roads to those scoring seven with highly efficient roads, the UAE scored 6.5, ahead of Singapore, Portugal and Oman in the top five, according to a study published by the Centre for Economics and Business Research, one of the UK’s leading economic consultants.
4. Deaths on Abu Dhabiroads decreased by 22 per cent during the first three months of 2017, according to statistics released by the traffic police. The number of road accidents also dropped by six per cent during the first quarter of 2017, compared to the same period last year.
5. Authorities said accidents were caused mainly by speeding, negligence, sudden change of lanes, recklessness, poor overtaking and not leaving enough distance between vehicles.
6. Exhaustion and drowsiness are the two leading causes of accidents during Ramadan, according to the RTA.
7. Ras Al Khaimah has seen a drop of 35.6 per cent in the number of the people injured in traffic accidents across the emirate, in the first quarter of this year compared to the same period last year.
8. In RAK, official records show that 90 people received minor to medium and serious injuries in the first three months of the year compared to 148 over the same period last year.
9. According to a study by Dubizzle Motors and Souqalmal.com:
– Looking at the number of insured vehicles in terms of year of manufacture, more than 50 per cent of the cars were less than three years old.
– The most popular features among UAE consumers when purchasing car insurance were agency repair, and personal accident cover for drivers and passengers.
– The standard depreciation value of a vehicle is five per cent per quarter, adding up to 20 per cent per year. Some cases start from ten per cent per year, and go up to 25 per cent annually.
10. According to recent data from the UAE Insurance Authority, a total of 1.7 million comprehensive motor insurance policies were issued in the UAE in 2015, registering growth of 12.3 per cent year-on-year. The number of third party policies stood at 1.3 million, growing at 7.4 per cent year-on-year during the same period.