Around 45 per cent of all road accidents in the UAE (and as much as 63 per cent in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi) are caused by young drivers (18 to 30 years old), according to data released by the Ministry of Interior (MOI).
The data further shows that he main causes for accidents within this age group are speeding, using phones behind the wheel and not keeping a safe distance between vehicles.
In a follow-up study by RoadSafetyUAE, it was found that among 18 to 24 year olds, the main reason for speeding (72%) was due to running late.
“Young drivers score worst in many dimensions of reckless driving when compared with older drivers, as our studies testify,” RoadSafetyUAE said in a statement. “It seems only with experience and when growing older, UAE’s motorists adjust their behavior and drive safer.”
Stakeholders interacting with young motorists need to be cognizant of their vulnerability and need to engage with them to protect them by passing on their experience of safe conduct on our roads, the study recommends.
“Young drivers are significantly more distracted, tailgate more, and use their indictors and seat belts less than the average motorist,” said Thomas Edelmann, managing director, RoadSafetyUAE. “When probed for the reasons for their behavior, some patterns crystalise: running late is a key ingredient both in speeding and tailgating. A lack of a caring attitude can be observed by statements like having less empathy for tailgated motorists, indicating less out of habit or not wanting to appear inexperienced, less demanding towards passengers and children to use their seat belts, which is coupled with a significantly lower level of knowledge about the new seat belt law.”
Ahead of the release of RoadSafetyUAE’s report, Logistics Middle East interviewed Edelmann on the sidelines of the Telematics Middle East Conference:
“Our brands attract young drivers and hence we decided to support RoadSafetyUAE for the topic ‘Young Driver’, and we also acted on the vital element of seat belt use,” added Mark Jenkins, CEO, Al Ghandi Auto Group. “Our role as an enterprise with pioneering social responsibility objectives led us to invest and introduce in the UAE the ‘Seat Belt Convincer’ as part of a nation-wide campaign called ‘I am convinced’.”
Mark Jenkins, CEO, Al Ghandi Auto Group
“We cooperate with corporations, universities and schools to deploy the seat belt convincer, in order to provide users with the tangible experience of how indispensable seat belt use is,” he added.
Stakeholders interacting with young motorists need to be cognizant of their vulnerability and need to engage with them to protect them by passing on their experience of safe conduct on our roads, the report finds.