DUBAI 29 May 2017: The Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has sent awareness messages to motorists urging them to avoid driving while feeling fatigue or sleepiness.
It cautioned them that driving under such circumstances raises the potentials of triggering traffic accidents, especially during Ramadan.
Maitha bin Adai, CEO of RTA Traffic & Roads Agency, said, “Motorists have to appreciate the risks associated with driving while the driver is not in a sound mental and health condition. Poor concentration, inattentiveness and tiredness raise the likelihood of causing crashes.”
The variations of the sleeping and office timings during Ramadan tend to influence the concentration level of fasting motorists; which is clearly visible at the time of driving from office to home where drivers concentration drops to the minimum; which impacts the ability of the driver to take the appropriate decision at the right time. Therefore, extra caution and attention is required when driving from the workplace back to home to avoid accidents.
The Traffic & Roads Agency is running a campaign to sensitise motorists during Ramadan as part of the traffic awareness plan of the Agency; which is aligned with the traffic safety strategy of the RTA, as the agency always seeks to turn RTA policies into awareness-raising programs. The Ramadan campaign will be based on social media channels; which are one of the most important channels of communicating with the public.
The agency will also distribute awareness leaflets and Ramadan gifts, and has forged a partnership with the Emirates Transport Driving Institute to launch an awareness campaign in Ramadan targeting motorists and trainees. Lectures will be delivered in three languages (Arabic, English and Urdu), flyers will be distributed containing main guidelines ought to be observed by drivers, and Iftar meals will be distributed on highways in collaboration with KAF Group.
Most accidents that take place in Ramadan are attributed to the lack of leaving safety distance between vehicles. Drivers are therefore encouraged to leave a sufficient distance between vehicles. They are advised to switch on air-conditioners of their vehicles as the hot conditions give rise to the feeling of exhaustion.
The driver has to maintain an upright position while seated, keeping the head raised while driving. Drivers are recommended to have a sufficient time of rest before sitting behind the wheel and cease driving once feeling very tired, drowsy or yawning.
Relaxing and resting for a short period may help the driver to complete the journey safely. Once drivers hear the call for Maghreb prayer while driving, they have to stop to take a light Iftar, even if a glass of water and few dates, before resuming the journey.
By Sheena Amos