Posted on May 13, 2013

Pedestrian safety was the focus of a campaign launched at Qatar University to mark the 2nd  United Nations Global Road Safety Week. The two days of talks, presentations and demonstrations on 8th and 9th May were organized by Qatar Road Safety Studies Center (QRSSC) in the College of Engineering and sponsored by Maersk Oil, with the aim of encouraging students, faculty and staff to drive more carefully and help reduce the number of pedestrian deaths as a result of road accidents in Qatar. It included talks by Hamad Medical Corporation’s Director of Trauma Critical Care Dr Ahmad  M. Zarzour and Head Nurse Asma Mosa and Capt. Hassena Al Ali and Lt Abdulwahd Al Anizi from the Traffic Department at the Ministry of the Interior, in addition to the QRSSC.

Qatar Road Safety Studies Center was established in September 2012 at Qatar University and is the only research center in Qatar working in road safety research. It collects and shares information related to road safety and accident prevention in Qatar by conducting studies, research and analysis and evaluation of road accidents in order to identify the root causes of accidents and critical factors that have a major effect on the reduction of accidents. 

In line with the UN’s international campaign, the Center’s Director Dr Khalifa Al-Khalifa outlined three areas of study on which the center is currently focusing - a general pedestrian safety awareness campaign; a national survey of pedestrian attitudes and behaviors, to get a clearer picture of the scope and magnitude of pedestrian activity and the public’s behavior and attitudes; and a pedestrian road safety audit. A pilot audit of driving violations which affect pedestrians has already taken place on QU campus. 

Dr Kahlifa said: “Optimal road safety is a crucial aspect of Qatar’s development, and the QRSSC is involved in many projects which campaign to raise awareness of the importance of driving safely and being pedestrian aware. We need to make sure the message is getting out clearly that we are all responsible for cutting Qatar’s fatality rate for road accidents.”

To raise road awareness among primary and secondary school pupils and university students in Qatar, the center has also launched a series of competitions including writing articles, designing posters and establishing an Instagram contest, all on the theme of pedestrian road safety.

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