Fewer crimes and road traffic accidents but drug cases are on the rise in Sharjah

2016 saw a 26 per cent decline in “serious crimes”, which includes murders and robberies but drugs offences increased by 15 per cent.

SHARJAH // Crime and traffic accidents declined in Sharjah last year, but drugs offences were on the rise, according to a police report.

In the year, a 26-per cent decline in serious crimes, which include murders and robberies, was recorded, but drugs offences increased by 15 per cent.

Overall, Sharjah Police registered 1,511 crimes compared to 2,040 in 2015. There were also 607 incidents on the emirate’s roads last year, resulting in 131 deaths and 65 severe injuries.

In 2015, there were 679 road incidents resulting in 86 severe injuries and 159 fatalities.

On the fight against drugs, police chief Brig Saif Al Zari said: “We have increased our awareness campaigns for residents and educational institutions to fight drugs.

“The emirate registered 643 cases of consumption, selling and importation, where the previous year we had 453 instances, which is a good indicator of our efforts.”

Police said they increased their patrols in hotspots to combat crime.

“We have deployed more patrols in Industrial areas 2 and 5 to curb thefts. We also deployed more officers in Al Sabkha and Al Qadisiya, where a lot of problems arise there from young teens. Social police roam these areas to limit the amount of problems,” said Col Abdullah bin Amer, deputy director of Sharjah Police.

He added that 7,000 cameras were deployed in Sharjah city and are monitored at the central operations centre, in addition to the increasing numbers of businesses connecting their security systems with the police.

“More banks, currency exchange centres, petrol stations, jewellery stores and workshops have been connected to the central command. When an alarm goes off, we open up the CCTV cameras to monitor the situation while police officers are dispatched to the scene,” Col bin Amer said.

Meanwhile, officers arrested 15,700 illegals living in Sharjah in 2016, an increase from 2015 when 15,300 were apprehended. The majority of them worked as street vendors or were beggars.

Sharjah officials said the 999 number took 727,767 calls last year, of which 43,251 were deemed as non-emergency. “This amount of non-emergency calls stops other residents in dire need from reaching the police in a timely manner,” said Col Aref Al Sharif, deputy director of central operations.

tzriqat@thenational.ae

Published: January 7, 2017 04:00 AM

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