ABU DHABI // The traffic police have said they will increase undercover patrols to curb speeding, which accounted for 70 per cent of all traffic offences registered in the emirate last year. The enforcement push comes after a year in which 33 people died and 22 were badly injured in speed-related accidents in Abu Dhabi. Col Hamad al Shamsi, the head of the Abu Dhabi Police Traffic Department, said there was increase in the number of fines issued last year for speeding.
According to police figures, speeding accounted for 1,629,365 of the 2,225,647 traffic offences registered in Abu Dhabi last year, and caused 122 accidents across the UAE. Col al Shamsi said police would monitor hot spots, aiming to spread awareness among offending drivers and explain the consequences of breaking traffic laws. The department is aiming to create a culture in which violators blame themselves for not following the rules and monitor their own actions, he said, adding that simply paying a fine but not changing behaviour was not enough.
The Ministry of Interior launched a campaign in December called "Together to Reduce Traffic Accidents", which will continue until the end of February. Traffic accidents' casualties are a huge concern to security officials, because accidents are one of the major causes of deaths and injuries in the country, said Col Ghaith al Zaabi, the director general of traffic co-ordination at the ministry. Another campaign, titled "Beware of Other People's Mistakes", will begin in mid-March and run until the end of May. To coincide with the summer, when many people travel to holiday spots by car, a campaign called "Your Safety Comes from the Safety of Your Car" will run from June to August.