Speed kills 76 in five days

4 Oct
Malak Shaher
Yemen Times

Published:04-10-2010

SANA’A, Oct. 3 – Speeding to their villages in order to spend the five days of this year’s Eid vacation with their families, hundreds of drivers instead found themselves in hospital, either injured in bed or in the morgue.

Haste not only caused injuries to the drivers but also to their passengers, who met similar -if not worse- fates.

During the Eid holiday, 251 accidents killed 76 people and caused 236 injuries, according to a report published by the Traffic Authority.

Yahya Mohammad Zahir, the head of the authority, told the Yemen Times that drivers and pedestrians cause 85 percent of the accidents.

“Unfortunately, the main reason for accidents is the drivers’ haste as well as the pedestrians’ carelessness when crossing the road,” Zaher said.

He added that accidents can also be caused by technical defects in vehicles and sudden changes in weather such as heavy rain and wind.

Apparently, people themselves realize that their haste is the main cause of many accidents but continue nonetheless to rush to their homes.

During Ramadan, for example, accidents increase as people hurry home to break the fast with their families.

“Breaking the fast with my family is something that’s very important to me. On one occasion I was running late but luckily the bus driver was driving fast. I reached home just in time but when I was on the bus, I was convinced that we were going to crash,” said Reem Ali, 19.

Accidents during the first 26 days of Ramadan, according to the report, were estimated at 948 in which 205 people were killed and 1,248 injured.

In Yemen, road accidents are on the rise as many people ignore safety instructions such as not using cell phones whilst driving.

Wearing seat belts only became a mandatory regulation for drivers in Yemen in 2009.

The authority is still working on decreasing the number of accidents by spreading the message amongst people that haste causes waste.

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