Road deaths reduced by 20 per cent in Sharjah

Police said an increase in traffic patrols and safety initiatives has contributed to the fall

The number of deaths on Sharjah's Roads fell by 20 per cent in 2018. Sammy Dallal / The National
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The number of road deaths in Sharjah fell by more than 20 per cent in 2018, police have said.

A total of 83 people died in traffic accidents in the emirate last year - down from the 105 fatalities recorded in 2017.

The decline in deaths was part of an overall reduction in accidents in Sharjah during the 12 month period, from 515 to 445.

During a press conference announcing the latest traffic statistics, Colonel Ahmad Al Naour, deputy head of central operations at Sharjah Police, said the number of fatal incidents involving pedestrians fell from 40 to 30.

The force cited an increase in traffic patrols and awareness campaigns for the reduction in accidents and deaths.

Safety initiatives have focused on accident hot spots in the emirate, including Maliha Road and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road.

“Seven deaths were recorded on Maliha Road last year compared to 14 the year before,” said Lt Col Khalid Al Kai, deputy director of traffic and patrols department.

Police recorded 1.4 million traffic violations in the emirate in 2018, compared to more than 1.6 million the previous year.

The force said traffic fines are in place as a deterrent, not to make money.

“Our goal is absolutely not financial, our main goal is to bring down the number of accidents and deaths resulting from them,” said Sharjah police chief, Brigadier Saif Al Zari Al Shamsi.

Brig Al Shamsi said that the Ministry of Interior's response time target for accidents of 11 minutes has now been cut to 9.6 minutes in Sharjah.

“Key factors in that improved response time include inaugurating a sophisticated operations room with cutting-edge technology, development of systems that help manage complaints and track callers,” said Brig Al Shamsi.