To combat this phenomenon, rally legend Hamed al Wahaibi on Tuesday joined hands with Oman's most famous footballer and national team captain Ali al Habsi to spread awareness on road safety.
Habsi has teamed up with Wahaibi as a co-founder of the recently-launched Safety First, an independent road safety organisation.
Wahaibi, who has spent his life behind the wheels, told the media that although he has more technical knowledge about cars and roads, Habsi will be the face of the campaign against rising road accidents.
“Habsi's popularity is impressive on and off the field, and he has been the obvious choice to lead the road safety awareness,” said Wahaibi.
Habsi, who most of the time is on duty for his English Premier League team Wigan Athletic, will devote his time to the organisation in a management role whenever he is in Oman.
“Both Wahaibi and I will use our public profiles to reach out to all road users - young and old, pedestrians and drivers,” he said.
“The entire community in Oman is concerned about road safety, which is now a national issue. Safety First will play an important role in informing and empowering people to make safer choices when using roads,” added Habsi.
He said that from next English Premier League season he would be sporting Safety First logo on his goalkeeping gloves. “It will be a good way to build the brand image of Safety First.”
Wahaibi said that roping in Habsi is just the beginning. “We want to engage the nation’s icons as well as the common man.
“We want to bridge gaps with the stakeholders and increase cooperation with agencies working on similar projects and share ideas with like-minded people.”
- Every eight hours someone is killed in a road accident in Oman
- Every hour someone is injured in a road accident in Oman
- Every 56km there is a death on Oman’s roads.
- Speeding and reckless driving account for 72 per cent of all accidents.
- In 2011, ROP imposed over 2.24mn fines for speeding.
- Compared to 2010, 2011 saw a 30 per cent increase in the number of deaths due to speeding.
- Nearly 60 per cent of all deaths on the roads are due to speeding.
- According to WHO, road traffic accidents are the third biggest killer of people in Oman.