We say it every Ramadan – to be extra careful on the roads during the holy month – but in spite of the many safety campaigns and indeed a host of useful tips on trying to improve road safety by the police and the RTA, it appears people aren’t heeding them. In the very first week of Ramadan itself, eight people were killed and 66 injured in 48 accidents reported across the country, the Ministry of Interior (MoI) said.

The MoI added that out of the 48 accidents, 10 involved cars hitting pedestrians. Lieutenant Gaith Hassan Al Za’abi, the general director of traffic coordination at the MoI, urged drivers to comply with all road safety rules to avoid accidents, stressing the importance of not exceeding the speed limit and keeping focused on the road at all times.

Although it’s been proven how beneficial fasting is for the body and mind, coupled with the extreme summer season it can leave many dehydrated or cause low blood sugar, which in turn can affect attentiveness, concentration, vision and reaction speed. Since we’re at the middle of Ramadan now, and in a bid to try and improve road safety, here are a few tips which we encourage drivers to follow:

1 - Keep at least a two car length between you and the vehicle ahead of you

2 - Do not tailgate

3 - Do not drive over the speed limit

4 - Expect the unexpected and always try to drive defensively

5 - Avoid rushing home close to Iftar time by planning your schedule properly

6 - Make sure you use your headlights in the evening/dawn

7 - If you are fasting and you begin to feel drowsy, pull over immediately

8 - Try to be courteous and give way to other drivers

9 - Try to use public transport or taxis if you can

10 - And last but not least, always wear your seat belt