Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 16 October 2019

Heavy traffic across the UAE as pupils return to school

Police launch campaign to boost road safety, reduce traffic and accidents

A parent drops off his children off at school. Delores Johnson / The National
A parent drops off his children off at school. Delores Johnson / The National

Heavy morning traffic returned to the streets of the UAE on Sunday as tens of thousands of pupils went back to school after a two-month summer holiday.

The two main motorways linking Sharjah and Dubai were busy from 6am.

Slow-moving traffic was reported on Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Road (E311) from Sharjah Industrial Area 13 to Nad Al Sheba in Dubai. And Al Ittihad Road was congested from Al Taawun to Hor Al Anz.

Motorists were caught in traffic on Al Naayat Street in Al Barsha 1, Street 123 in Al Barsha South 2 and on Ras Al Khor Road (E44) from Al Warqaa to Dubai.

In Abu Dhabi, heavy traffic was reported in Khalifa City, as families left their homes for school. Slow-moving traffic was also reported on Abu Dhabi International Airport Road from Khalifa City to Al Forsan Village and in Sheikh Zayed Tunnel.

More traffic jams are expected over the next few days as some schools open later in the week.

Meanwhile, traffic police were out in full force on Sunday morning to ensure schools runs were as smooth as possible.

The Ministry of Interior planned for the busy mornings with a road safety campaign that focuses on protecting children as they wait for the school bus.

“Statistics have shown that accidents are likely to occur while pupils are waiting for the bus and in front of schools,” said Maj Gen Mohammad Al Zafeen, director of the Dubai police traffic department.

“These accidents have resulted in various injuries among children, who cross the road on their own, or due to recklessness of bus drivers who fail to comply with traffic rules,” he said.

Maj Gen Al Zafeen called on parents not to allow their children to sit in the front seat of the car, and recommended they drop their children off away from the school gates to avoid a build-up of traffic around the entrance.

He reminded taxi and school bus drivers to abide by traffic laws and to be extra cautious when driving near schools and in residential areas to ensure the safety of pupils.

He stressed the need to take necessary precautions, such as making sure the vehicle door is closed before driving away, avoiding excessive speed near or around schools, not opening the vehicle door before coming to a full stop and supervising pupils as they board or exit the bus.

Maj Gen Al Zafeen directed school officials to ensure bus supervisors pay close attention to pupils in their care.

Updated: September 1, 2019 02:25 PM

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