Texting by mobile phones while driving has emerged a major cause of road accidents in UAE, accounting for nearly 19 per cent of the total mishaps in the country last year.
Police figures showed more than 55,000 mobile phone offences while driving were recorded in the UAE in 2015 and most of them involved texting and surfing the web.
“Nearly 19 per cent of the road accidents in the UAE last year were caused by lack of concentration and negligence mainly due to using mobile phones. Texting and surfing social networks were the main causes,” an interior ministry report said.
It said using mobile phones while driving has become a serious offence given its role in road deaths, adding that such offences are equally serious as the speeding, reckless driving and jumping the red lights.
“Surfing social networks including Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and Instragram while driving has also become a key cause of road accidents as this act largely contributes to disorientation of the driver,” said Colonel Jamal Al Amri, director of public relations at the Abu Dhabi police.