Qatar’s efforts to reduce road accidents and fatalities have yielded results with a drop of 2.8% and 8.3%, respectively, during 2019, it was announced on Sunday.
Fatal accidents also decreased in 2019, by 13%. The figures were announced at a press conference, convened by the General Directorate of Traffic. Major General Mohamed Saad al-Kharji, Director General of Traffic, along with directors and officers from various departments.
Brigadier Ibrahim Saad al-Sulaiti, head of the Statistical Analysis Office at the Ministry of Interior (MoI), explained that the achievement was possible despite the country recording an increase in the number of vehicles by 4.3% and the number of licences going up by 5.5%.
As many as 97% of the accidents, recorded in 2019, were minor without injuries while the accidents of severe injuries accounted for 0.3% and those resulting in deaths, 0.1%. In 2019, a total of 154 deaths were reported, as against 168 in 2018.
Traffic accidents decreased in 2019 by 16.2% and the traffic accident severity index decreased by 15.8% compared to the same indicator registered in 2018.
While comparing various global indicators of traffic accident with other countries, al-Sulaiti said that all of them were lower than global averages. “The accident death rate for every 100,000 people in Qatar is 4.4 deaths, which is lower than the global average of 18.2 deaths by 5.8%. It is also less than the rate recorded in the high-income countries by 47%. Similarly, the traffic death rate per 100,000 vehicles in Qatar is lower than the global average by 85.5% and the traffic accident severity index in Qatar is lower than the global average by 46.7%. It also shows a decrease in the traffic death rate per 1,000sq m from the global average at a rate of 35%,” he said.
He added that all road traffic death rates, recorded in Qatar in 2019, show a significant decrease from global indicators and ratios. He pointed out that there was a decrease in the number of traffic accident deaths in the last ten years by 31.3%. A decrease of 60.7% was recorded in the traffic death rate per 100,000 people during the same period. “This proves that the strategies, developed to reduce deaths, have achieved the desired goals,” he said.
Al-Sulaiti hailed the efforts of traffic safety partners including the Traffic Department, the National Traffic Safety Committee, ambulance service, the Public Works Authority (Ashghal), the Ministry of Municipality and Environment (MME) and other institutions and agencies in Qatar.
He said that most of the people who died because of traffic accidents were males (91.6%). Almost half of the people who died in traffic accidents, at a rate of 48.1%, were between 20 to 39 years old.
He noted that the drivers ’deaths accounted for 45.5% with 70 cases reported during the period while the number of passenger deaths was 40 cases and this stood at 26%. A total of 44 cases of pedestrian deaths were reported at a rate of 28.6%.
The number of Qataris who died in traffic accidents was 42 at a rate of 27.3%. It came down by 6.7% in 2019. The number of the deceased from the Arab nationalities were 31 at a rate of 20.1% while the remaining 81 deaths that accounted for 52.6% were other expatriates.
Al-Kharji thanked the officers at the General Directorate of Traffic for their great efforts and called for more effort to maintain the achievements.
He said that Ashghal is building pedestrian crossing places, tunnels and bridges and these will work reduce pedestrian accidents. “Fencing on the roads compels pedestrians to cross from designated places only,” he noted. He added that the percentage of pedestrian deaths, which stood at 28.6% in 2019, would reach 0% in the future.
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