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Dangerous Driving Trends among Young Residents Spark Concerns


Dec 22, 2023 #UAE

Dubai – Recent incidents of dangerous driving leading to severe injuries and fatalities have raised concerns about the growing trend of risky behavior among young residents in the UAE. Factors such as seeking cheap thrills, the desire for an adrenaline rush, and the pursuit of social media attention have been identified as key motivations behind these perilous activities.

In a disturbing episode earlier this week, five young men, aged between 18 and 20, sustained serious injuries after a crash resulting from dangerous stunts in the Al Ruwayyah desert area. Another tragic incident involved a young couple who lost their lives when their overspeeding sports car fell from a bridge near Etihad Mall in Al Khawaneej.

Some young drivers admit to engaging in stunt driving for the thrill and the desire to capture attention on social media platforms. The phenomenon of creating ‘reels’ showcasing daring driving maneuvers has gained popularity, driven by the fascination of viewers with such risky displays.

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While some drivers acknowledge the dangers involved, citing the need for skills and familiarity with their vehicles, others are enticed by the allure of social media views and the adrenaline rush associated with speeding and stunt driving.

Road safety advocates emphasize the need for intervention and education to address this concerning trend. Thomas Edelmann, founder and managing director of RoadSafetyUAE, highlights the vulnerability of young drivers, noting that they are overrepresented in crash and traffic fatality statistics. He suggests incorporating ‘life skills’ content into driving school curriculums and implementing staged driving licenses to gradually allow access to higher-performance vehicles based on a driver’s record.

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Dubai Police have also taken steps to deter dangerous driving by imposing harsh fines for traffic offenses. Reckless driving and participating in illegal road races now incur fines of up to Dh50,000 and Dh100,000, respectively, for the release of impounded vehicles.

While seeking thrills and social media attention may drive some individuals towards risky driving behaviors, authorities and road safety advocates are urging comprehensive measures to curb these trends and ensure the safety of road users. The focus is on education, awareness, and strict enforcement to address the root causes of dangerous driving among young residents.

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