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Dubai’s Daft Dangerous Drivers
Eva Fernandes is just tired with the plain stupid mistakes drivers in Dubai are happy to make over and over again despite the fatal consequences.
October 17, 2011 4:38 by Eva Fernandes
I would hardly say that I have perfected the art of learning from my mistakes.
No matter how many times I learn, the “hard way”, of the importance of being a balanced, calm and fit individual, I still seem to slump into an unconscious state of being a lazy frazzled old lump. And when I catch myself being too hard on myself for not being as perfect as I should be, I always remind myself that the self is work in progress. Some mistakes, no matter how often they are committed, are excusable.
But you know what? Some mistakes are completely and totally inexcusable.
These are the mistakes that don’t even need the experience or wisdom to never be committed. Like consuming a bottle full of cyanide, hitting on your boss’s wife or wearing high-waist-ed acid jeans post-1995.
OK, I am being facetious here, but you get the point. There are some things so damn obvious that you can’t help wonder about the human race when tragedy upon tragedy occurs because of people’s committing the most obvious mistakes. Here in the Emirates, I find myself thinking along this theme time and time again when I read about driving habits. Here are my two favourite recent examples of just how stupid we in the UAE really are when it comes to driving.
BBM-ing while driving: talk about stating the obvious, but when you are driving you really shouldn’t be texting. Here in the UAE where the problem of speeding and other fatal road accidents was the theme of one short film titled “An Emirati Dilemma”; the real link between the activity and road accidents was extremely apparent in the wake of the severance of Blackberry services.
According to the National, during the three-day disruption of Blackberry service “in Dubai, traffic accidents fell 20 percent from average rates on the days BlackBerry users were unable to use its messaging service. In Abu Dhabi, the number of accidents this week fell 40 percent and there were no fatal accidents.”
Do we really need a service-cut to recognise the obvious? Come on, people! You can’t expect to be the best driver when you are totally absorbed in a passionate exchange over BBM. Even when you give it your 100 percent attention, accidents happen so why ever would pick up your phone?!
Drunk driving: Major General Mohammad Saif Al Zafein, Director of Dubai Police’s Traffic Department recently announced a new initiative to limit the number of drunk drivers on the roads of Dubai: “Hotel staff will be instructed to make sure a guest or visitor is stable, both mentally and physically, before handing over his car and allowing him to drive away.”
OK, so if you are in Muslim country that has an absolutely zero tolerance policy to drunk driving, why would you ever step into your car with even just a little liquor in your system? And, if you knew you had a little too much to drink, why in the world, would you ever considering driving home? Take a taxi. They are abundant, especially at bars and hotels, and are pretty cheap!
Just like I wonder why you would drive with your toddler on your lap in the driver’s seat? Why wouldn’t you indicate when you change lanes at 120km/h on Sheikh Zayed Road? Why, why, why… The questions are unending but the point is poignant: a little more attention on the roads can save lives, why aren’t we listening to the authorities?