Road accidents killed 720 people in the UAE in 2011 and were mostly caused by speed, reckless driving and failure to comply with traffic rules by both drivers and pedestrians, according to police data.
The death toll last year was nearly 12.8 per cent below 2010, when 826 people were killed on roads, the figure showed.
Total accidents also declined by nearly 12.3 per cent to 6,700 from 7,642 and police attributed this mainly to better road conditions.
“The decline in both the death toll and the number of accidents last year was due to the enforcement of a new traffic police strategy intended to improve safety on roads, upgrade medical services, introduce black points and impound offending vehicles deemed dangerous to roads,” said Brigadier Gaith Al Zaabi, director general of traffic coordination at the Ministry of Interior.
Quoted by the Arabic language daily Alkhaleej, he said the accidents last year were caused mostly by failure of motorists to comply with assigned distances (758 accidents), jumping the red lights (416 accidents), reckless driving (129 accidents) and tyre burst (96 accidents).
He said key causes of accidents that resulted in deaths included a miscalculation by both the drivers and pedestrians (83 deaths), failure to stick to the lane (43 deaths), wrong entry of street (41 deaths) and high speed (34 deaths).