The Ministry of Interior (MoI) has recently uploaded an ‘open data’ on road safety statistics for 2023, identifying which roads and streets are more prone to accidents.

Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Road (E311), a major UAE road from Al Falah in Abu Dhabi to Ras Al Khaimah (RAK), last year registered the most number of people involved in accidents at 266, including 223 road users who were injured and 43 who died.

The second most dangerous road is Emirates Road with 18 fatalities and 104 injuries of varying degrees for a total of 104.

Dubai’s Sheikh Zayed Road came in third with 16 deaths and 131 injuries of for a total of 147. Fourth is Abu Dhabi-Al Ain Road with a total of 184, including 171 injuries and 13 fatalities. Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Road came in fifth place a total of 146, including 134 injuries and 12 deaths.

Rounding up the Top 10 most dangerous roads in the UAE are Abu Dhabi-Al Sila Road (6th) – 62 injuries, 11 fatalities; total 73. Dubai-Al Ain Road (7th) 19 injuries, 10 fatalities; total 29. Tarif Road (8th) 24 injuries, 7 deaths; total 31. Khor Fakkan Road (9th) 17 injuries, 7 deaths; total 24. Al Khail Road (10th) 154 injuries, 5 fatalities; total 159.

Thomas Edelmann, founder and managing director of RoadSafetyUAE, noted the ranking of dangerous roads is based on the number of deaths and not on the total (injuries + deaths), as “the strongest indicator in road safety is the number of fatalities.”

Breakdown by emirate

The MoI data also revealed Abu Dhabi topped the list of fatalities, while Dubai topped the most number of injuries in 2023.

In terms of road deaths, Abu Dhabi last year registered 133, followed by Dubai with 121; Sharjah 34; RAK 30; Umm Al Quwain 16; Ajman 11; and Fujairah 7.

Dubai registered a total of 2,607 people injured in varying degrees from light to serious. The emirate accounts for 47 per cent of the total 5,568 injuries across the UAE.

Abu Dhabi came in second with the most number of injuries at 1,850; followed by Sharjah with 387; RAK 326; Fujairah 202; Ajman 133; and UAQ 63.

Positive development

Edelmann said “the rise in accidents and injuries is alarming, calling the need for a continued focus on road safety. But the over-all picture is showing a positive development as fatality numbers hover near the 'all-time low’ that was witnessed in 2022."

There were 352 road fatalities across the country in 2023, up by 3 per cent as compared to in 2022 with 343 deaths, but significantly down 8 per cent as compared to 381 fatalities recorded in 2021.

“The long-term trend is remarkable,” Edelmann underscored, explaining “The last time the UAE reported more than 1,000 traffic fatalities was in the year 2008 (1,072). This means a remarkable 67 per cent drop in road fatalities over the last 15 years.

Increased efforts needed

Edelmann said “increased efforts are needed to improve road safety – and this can be done through education and stricter enforcement of traffic laws.”

“A strong focus is also needed on the young segment of the 19-29 years old, and also the 30-39 years old segment. Together, these two main segments account for more than 60 per cent of the casualties. Drivers must embrace their responsibility for their passengers and other vulnerable road users, especially pedestrians.” he added.

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