There has been a big drop in the number of deaths in road traffic accidents during the month of July 2019 compared to July 2018 as a result of the sustained awareness campaign run by the Traffic department, a senior official said on Thursday.
Addressing a press conference, Colonel Mohamed Radi al-Hajri, Director of Traffic Awareness Department at the General Directorate of Traffic, said the number of fatalities came down by as much as 67% last month compared to the same period last year.
He pointed out that traffic statistics showed the extent of the response of motorists to awareness campaigns organised by the General Directorate of Traffic.
“The statistics showed a drop in the rates of some traffic violations. For example, cases of using mobile phones while driving recorded a decline of 65%. While the total number of violations during the month of July 2019 was 796 , it was 2,261 in the same month of 2018.”
He stressed that the General Directorate of Traffic will continue its awareness efforts by focusing on some of the violations that show an increase, such as yellow box violation.
Meanwhile, the Accident-Free Summer Drive organised by the Traffic Awareness Department ended on Thursday with officials giving details of the five-week campaign held in co-operation with Traffic Patrols and Investigation Department and the Public Relations Department of the Ministry of Interior.
The campaign was aimed at promoting safe driving and sensitising drivers on a number of common traffic violations.
Colonel al-Hajri explained that the campaign launched on 1 July focused on five common traffic violations, and the motorists were educated on the seriousness of these violations and the negative effects resulting from them.
He said the first week of the campaign focused on the need to avoid using mobile phones while driving. During the second week, rules regarding parking lots reserved for people with special needs were highlighted, through direct awareness campaigns for motorists in a number of major shopping malls. The drivers were educated on traffic law regarding this violation and the humanitarian aspects resulting from it.
The third week of the drive concentrated on overtaking and passing on the right, to highlight the dangers of this violation and the legal procedures prescribed for the perpetrators.
In the fourth week, the campaign focused on pedestrian traffic safety rules. A number of activities, workshops and events were organised in this regard. The directorate educated the public on the penalties for violations of pedestrian safety rules and the obligation of the pedestrians while crossing the road.
In its final week, the accident-free summer drive raised awareness on yellow box traffic violations.
Captain Abdul Wahed Gharib al-Enezi, traffic awareness officer, said this year’s drive focused on direct awareness of motorists through traffic patrols.
“A number of events and awareness activities were conducted in all areas of the country, in order to raise awareness of motorists and others about the rules of traffic safety and safe driving, and the seriousness of these violations.”
He added that the drive came within the strategic plan of the General Directorate of Traffic aimed at consolidating and strengthening traffic safety culture among all members of the community in order to reduce accidents, deaths and injuries resulting from accidents.
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