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Saudi Road Accidents Highest in World, Report Says

17 March 2010

Road accidents in Saudi Arabia have been recorded as the highest in the world, according to the Kingdom's General Directorate of Traffic report.

The report says that an average of 17 Saudi Arabian residents die on the country's roads each day, according to thearab-news.com.

The study revealed that during 2008 and 2009, nearly 6,485 people had died and more than 36,000 were injured in over 485,000 traffic accidents.

Nearly 30% of traffic accidents in the Saudi capital Riyadh were due to drivers jumping red lights, followed by 18% of accidents caused by illegal U-turns.

The study identified speeding, sudden stops and speaking on the phone while driving as the most common dangerous driving activities.

Saudi Arabia has recorded four million traffic accidents, which has led to 86,000 deaths and 611,000 injuries, 7% of which resulted in permanent disabilities, in the past two decades.

The study was conducted after World Health Organization (WHO) rated Saudi Arabia as having the world's highest number of deaths from road accidents.

The Kingdom received five points out of ten in applying speed limits, two out of ten in applying helmet wearing for motorcycle riders and cyclists, five out of ten in applying seatbelt regulations and two out of ten in ensuring children’s safety in vehicles in the WHO rating.

The King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) recently said in a report that Saudi Arabia will have over 4 million traffic accidents a year by 2030, if the increasing number of road accident rates is not curbed.