The International Road Transport Union (IRU) conference yesterday highlighted Qatar’s future plans to improve road transportation and preparations for the FIFA World Cup 2022.
The three-day conference titled ‘Ensuring Safe Mobility of People and Goods During Major Events in the State of Qatar’ kick started at the Traffic Department’s headquarters at Madinat Khalifa where experts and officials contemplated measures to reduce traffic congestion and road accidents.
Dr Kim Jraiw, director of the National Traffic Safety Office at the National Traffic Safety Committee (NTSC), said Qatar is racing towards the goal of achieving international standards in ensuring smooth traffic flow and reducing fatalities and deaths on roads. He was addressing the session ‘State of play on vision, policies and statistics related to road safety in Qatar’.
He said: “Co-ordinated efforts are being carried and plans are chalked out to achieve this goal. Government support, laws, national strategy and co-operation from various stakeholders will help the country improve road transportation. Accident deaths and fatalities have come down due to collective efforts by the stakeholders.”
According to him, deaths on roads are coming down despite the increase in the number of residents and vehicles. The number of deaths stood at 235 in 2013 and it went down to 167 in 2018. It will be further brought down in 2020,” he said.
The conference is organised by Mowasalat (Karwa) in partnership with the Traffic Department and the National Traffic Safety Committee, with the participation of national and international organisations specialised in traffic safety.
HE the Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim Seif Ahmed al-Sulaiti inaugurated the conference. The opening ceremony was attended by Mowasalat chairman Dr Saad bin Ahmed al-Muhannadi, director general of General Directorate of Traffic and second vice president of NTSC Maj Gen Mohamed Saad al-Kharji and IRU director, Certification and Standards, Patrick Philipp.
The director of the National Traffic Safety Office said efforts to improve road transportation will be continued while analyses, checks, workshops and awareness programmes will be held across the country in co-ordination with Ashghal, Traffic Department and Ministry of Public Health (MoPH).
“Latest innovations and technologies will be also introduced to improve traffic flow on roads and bring down accidents,” he said. Jassim al-Dousari, Licensing Department administrator, Land Transport Licensing Department, MoTC, said efforts are on to promote safety on roads.
“Effective law has been enacted to improve traffic and reduce casualties. Workshops will be held to discuss the latest trends and updates regarding improvement. We are committed to tapping the potential of technology to attain our goal and efforts will be carried with co-operation from the private sector,” he said.
Col Mohamed Radi al-Hajiri, director of Traffic Awareness Department, said a unified electronic system will be introduced to improve standards of road transportation.
“Inspections and checks will be enhanced to bring down violations and number of accidents,” he said. Ivan Williams, Transport Operations senior manager at Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC), laid stress on the plans to ensure smooth transportation during World Cup 2022. He was attending the panel discussion on ‘WC2022-preparations for managing safe and efficient mobility of people and goods’.
“Qatar is embracing the changes to host the major sports events,” he said stressing on the need to ensure connectivity among all stadiums, accommodation places and other destinations.
Projects affairs director Yousef Abdulrahman al-Emadi, attending the discussion, said Ashghal is making efforts to ensure smooth traffic flow on roads and set up parking facilities with stadiums. “We are working with all stakeholders to bring in the best transportation system in place,” he said.
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