The number of road accidents in Oman in 2011 saw a rise of more than 20 per cent, compared to 2010 figures, statistics issued by the Directorate General for traffic stated. As many as 1,051 fatalities and 11,322 injuries in road accidents were registered last year, indicating a worrisome trend.
According to 2010 statistics, 820 people died and 10,066 were injured in road mishaps. Presiding over the second meeting of the National Committee for Road Safety at the ROP headquarters in Qurm on Saturday, Lt Gen Hassan bin Mohsin al Shuraiqi, Inspector General of Police and Customs, said, “We need coordinated efforts from public and private institutions to reduce accidents.
The ROP appreciates all efforts made towards bringing down the number of accidents and vows to continue with its public awareness campaigns to inculcate traffic safety culture among people.”
Shuraiqi said that the ROP has intensified its campaign to book traffic violators, especially reckless drivers, who put lives of other road users at risk.
The meeting reviewed the plans aimed at increasing traffic patrols in all governorates in addition to installing state-of-the-art fixed and mobile devices for monitoring roads.
It also discussed the traffic plan for 2012 and ways to implement various measures with the help of Omani and international experts. It authorised the Council of Ministers to seek support from international think tanks to assess road safety issues and to identify the root cause of the problem, which will help tackle it effectively.
According to an ROP official, speeding is the main reason behind most road accidents in Oman. “Most of the accidents, which take place on highways are because drivers are always in a hurry. They forget that their vehicles move on rubber tyres, which generate heat on asphalt roads.
“This, coupled with the outside temperature, causes tyres to burst, leading drivers to lose control of the vehicle. Another cause is careless driving in rain and fog, and while negotiating curves and slopes.”