x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Police hope to calm Ramadan rush with iftar meals for motorists

Ramadan 2012: Dubai police are handing out meals for motorists immediately before iftar in an effort to cut down on bad driving.

DUBAI // Police are handing out iftar meals to motorists in an effort to cut down on dangerous driving during the "Ramadan rush hour".

As part of the Preserve Your Fasting campaign, officers are deployed at traffic junctions in Bur Dubai and Diera to hand out the meals while reminding drivers of the drastic consequences reckless driving can have.

"Traffic accidents often increase during Ramadan as before iftar some drivers increase their speed, drive on the hard shoulder or jump a red light as they try to reach their homes, all of these violations are bound to cause deadly accidents," said the traffic department's Lt Col Juma bin Sweidan, who is in charge of the campaign.

"We urge motorists to be cautious while driving and not to speed and violate the spirit of Ramadan," he added.

The campaign is being carried out on behalf of the Police Traffic Department, the Union Cooperative and Al Ihsan charitable society.

Earlier this week police warned motorists of the "Ramadan rush hour" after recording 3,605 traffic accidents in the emirate since the start of the Holy Month.

About 200 of these occurred shortly before iftar. It is not known how many resulted in casualties or how many traffic accidents occurred during Ramadan in previous years.

Last year 14 people died in Dubai road accidents during Ramadan, compared with only four the previous month.

wissa@thenational.ae