Dubai Police have revealed that six people have been killed in road accidents this year caused by drivers using mobile phones behind the wheel.
In the first eight months of this year, the force has recorded 35,527 offences of distracting driving. 50 people were left injured as a result.
Out of the 90 serious traffic accidents recorded in the eight-month period, six people people were killed.
"Distracted driving is a significant problem on the roads and it puts everyone at risk," Maj Gen Saif Al Mazrouei, director of traffic at Dubai Police, said in a statement.
"Drivers using their phones while driving reduces the human reaction to avoid accidents, especially if the driver is browsing social media platforms or texting."
Maj Gen Al Mazrouei said many motorists are not aware that being distracted while driving can cause a threat to their lives and others.
“It's just a matter of few seconds to cause accident and maybe death," he said. "The driver and other innocent people may have to pay the price of that for the rest of their lives."
The force is using smart radars to spot distracted drivers.
Motorists found using mobile phones while driving will be fined Dh800 and receive four traffic points on their licence.
"Dubai Police launched many awareness campaigns about the danger of this offence and displayed clips of serious accidents that have resulted in fatalities, but still some won't understand the danger until they face an accident," Maj Gen Mazrouei added.
The force said sudden swerving, failing to maintain a sufficient distance and speeding were the main reasons behind fatal accidents in Dubai, but using mobile phones while driving was the common factor.
"Dubai Police will intensify the patrols and campaigns to crack down offenders to protect the lives of road users in Dubai."