x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Red light jumpers account for 11 per cent of traffic crashes in Abu Dhabi

Drivers jumping red lights were responsible for 11 per cent of crashes across Abu Dhabi emirate in the first quarter of this year.

ABU DHABI // Jumping a red light caused 11 per cent of traffic accidents in the emirate in the first quarter of this year, new traffic statistics show.

Traffic police urged motorists to slow down as they approach traffic lights and junctions and to avoid increasing speed when traffic lights turn from green to yellow.

Col Jamal Salem Al Ameri, head of public relations at Abu Dhabi Police's Traffic and Patrols Department, said accidents from jumping red lights often had serious consequences and put motorists in danger.

Offenders receive eight black points on their driving record and a Dh800 fine, and their vehicles are confiscated for 15 days.

Last month, state-of-the-art triple-function traffic cameras installed at 40 junctions in Abu Dhabi city became operational.

It is the first phase of a plan to enhance traffic monitoring across the emirate.

Besides snapping pictures of speeding motorists or those jumping a red light, the cameras will help police monitor traffic during an accident thanks to a built-in, high-definition video camera, which stores and renders images around the clock. The radar will be set with a buffer against the posted speed limit.

After this initial phase, these triple-function cameras will be installed elsewhere, according to Brig Gen Hussein Al Harethi, head of the traffic and patrols directorate in Abu Dhabi.

The second and third phases will involve Al Ain and the Western Region, to better cover high-risk areas and intersections where a significant number of accidents have happened, Brig Al Harethi told The National's Arabic-language sister paper, Al Ittihad.

"The goal is to bring down the number of accidents at traffic-light intersections, which are the most dangerous," he said.

As part of the Arab Traffic Week's awareness programme, Col Al Ameri urged motorists to reduce their speed at traffic light junctions and to stop completely at a red light.

rruiz@thenational.ae