(MENAFN - Jordan Times) The Central Traffic Department (CTD) on Monday said 90 per cent of traffic accidents are the result of driver error.
The main errors that lead to accidents include not leaving a safe distance between vehicles, exceeding speed limits and driving in the wrong direction, especially at intersections, according to the CTD. Drivers who fail to obey road signs and who do not yield to pedestrians also contribute to traffic accidents.
The number of traffic accidents resulting from driver error jumped from 143,314 in 2010 to 155,689 in 2011, while 689 deaths resulted from these accidents, according to CTD figures.
A study conducted by the department revealed a 110.9 per cent increase in the number of vehicles in the Kingdom over the past 10 years, coupled with a 76.3 per cent increase in the number of licensed drivers. Also, the number of vehicles with foreign plates entering the country rose by 180.3 per cent.
Lt. Col. Maen Khasawneh, director of the CTD's media department, emphasised the importance of drivers being cognisant of traffic safety, noting that deterrent measures alone are not sufficient.
"This consciousness must come from inside, not just to avoid a traffic ticket," he said.
Educational Psychology Professor Nazih Hamdi said motorists should be trained to respect traffic rules and regulations. He also emphasised the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, which can impair spatial awareness.
A person who drives under the influence of drugs or alcohol sees a distance of 25 metres as five metres and this lack of spatial awareness can cause a driver to commit all sorts of violations, such as crossing a red light or driving against traffic, Hamdi explained.
The CTD and concerned officials suggested several potential strategies for curbing the number of traffic accidents, such as offering incentives like reduced insurance or licensing fees to motorists who maintain clean driving records, training drivers on better ways to deal with stress and anger, and installing more police surveillance cameras to monitor traffic.
Other recommended steps include better planning when designing new roads and evaluating black spots - areas that witness frequent accidents - to determine why accidents are concentrated in these particular places.