Thursday, December 7, 2006

Road Safety سلامة الطرق

One of my aims in this blog is to open up discussions regarding a few issues of importance. One of these issues is ROAD SAFETY, or the "lack of". You may have guessed this from the links on my blog (please have a look at them).
It’s very sad that especially in Libya, so many people die, many of whom are young and many, many more are left seriously injured and incapacitated for life. Living abroad and going back home from time to time; the first thing a person is shocked by is the way people drive, starting from the airport! Many people don't have any sense of safety at all. This attitude and disregard for road safety seems to get worse every year, which tragically translates to loss of life and serious injury for many people. Looking across the Arab and developing world, the situation doesn't seem to be much more different, although statistics and studies seem to be lacking or difficult to access.
Arabic websites? I couldn't find any that are dedicated to road safety! Please tell me if there are any.
In Libya and most of the Arab countries, especially the more affluent ones, road deaths are one of the biggest causes (if not the biggest!) of death in the younger age groups.
The situation is getting worse and this is further compounded by the lack of regard from people and the "Kada wa Kader(fate)" attitude that people have. Drive at 200km/hr, kill a family, its "Kada wa kader", no its not, its manslaughter. Yes there is "kada wa kader", but also Allah asked us to be respectful of life and not to take risks that endanger anyone’s life.

All in all it’s a huge problem that needs to be tackled, but I firmly believe education and awareness is one of the most important ways of doing this. If there is away to we can contribute towards this, it will make an impact, and please don't underestimate any form of impact, if it saves one life, that will be enough. Many of our young people, whole families even, have perished on our roads. I hope people can start taking care and try to contribute to the safety of their roads thus the safety of their families.

Hopefully in the near future I can discuss ways of doing this and please if any one has any suggestion please feel free to contribute. The main emphasis here is not to complain, or to theorise about the issue, that won’t get us anywhere! The main goal is to find people who can contribute, i.e. setting up an Arabic web site, that contributes to the matter, translates major studies and solutions, online safety posters that can be printed by people to distribute, I’m sure there are a lot of translators out there. I’m sure there are a lot of ways, there are a lot of talented people. I repeat, please no moaning about the problem is “that and that’s fault”, we need practical answers that people can contribute towards.

Positive practical contribution is the key, not negative criticism.

If you click on one of the links I have listed “Children’s Traffic Club” from the UK, it emphasizes the importance of teaching children early, guess what? No similar Arabic or Libyan websites, any one out there who can do the same? There are a lot of talented people out there in Libya and the Arab world who can contribute and build such websites. If you can, please help. This contribution will eventually have an impact.

A website may be a small step, but none-the-less it is a step. I am sure there are many other ideas that simple people like you and me can think of and more importantly apply to help make our roads safer. Although I am specifying Libya here, this does apply to the whole world, but unfortunately in our part of the world its a huge problem that people seem to disregard and be complacent about. This ignorance has lead to huge suffering. I hope to raise awareness of this with the help of others. Remember: ONE death, ONE injury is ONE too many! All of them are preventable.

Last but not least please Drive Safely!


Lebeeya said...

Thank you for this post beacon!

Accident rates are so high everywhere. But I dont think its lack of awarness. Everyone knows of the danger they put themselves and other drivers in when they speed but most people tend to ignore that fact while driving!

Allah yahfadna inshallah!

Beacon said...

Thanks for your comments Lebeeya, I respect your view. But if you look at studies it does show that lack of awareness and education is a main factor. I know legislation, the law, and road maintainance is a major factor. But education is the main thing we can intervene in as private individuals. Private initiatives can also play a part. Please keep visiting the blog, and please if you have any ideas, give them. I will post some new things soon.


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