Causes and Health-Related Outcomes of Road Traffic Crashes in the United Arab Emirates: Panel Data Analysis of Traffic Fines
Aims: To investigate the main causes and consequences of road traffic injuries (RTIs) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the effect of traffic fines on these injuries.
Methods: This cross-sectional study analysed road traffic deaths and injuries and panel data of monthly traffic accident fines from 2012 to 2016 in the UAE. A fixed-effects (FE) model was used to determine the factors associated with RTIs over time. The FE model removes the effect of time-invariant aspects from the independent variables, thus assessing the net impact of the independent variables on the outcome variable. The independent variables were dangerous driving behaviors defined as a sudden turn, neglect and lack of attention, and excess speed. The outcome variables were the total number of road traffic deaths and injuries.
Results: Road traffic deaths, severe injuries, and moderate injuries remained constant from 2012 to 2016 but mild injuries decreased starting 2013. Human errors such as a sudden turn (22%), excess speed (12%) and lack of road user appreciation (12%) play a central role in road traffic injuries. The number of fines issued to drivers (66% for speeding) increased by 50% in the five year period.
Conclusion: Road traffic injuries in the UAE remained stable from 2012 to 2016 despite an increase in traffic fines issued to drivers. Human errors continue to be a major cause of these injuries. Additional enforcement strategies are needed to address this health burden.