New Saudi speed limits to help cut number of road deaths

Updated 08 December 2017
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New Saudi speed limits to help cut number of road deaths

RIYADH: Warning signs and guides to make drivers aware of new speed limits have begun to be installed by the Ministry of Transport in response to a directive from the Ministry of Interior in coordination with the General Directorate of Traffic and Road Security.
The move is expected to cut the number of deaths due to road accidents, which totalled 1,864 from January to October this year. The Ministry of Transport aims to reduce the number of fatalities by 25 percent by 2020.
Turki Al-Taaimi, director general of marketing and corporate communication at the ministry, said the new signs and guides will direct drivers to the new speed limits, which have been set at 140 km per hour for small vehicles, local media quoted him as saying.
He said that, as part of the program to raise the level of road safety, the ministry is undertaking a number of projects that contribute to speed reduction, such as vibration bumps on the sides of highways.
He said the signs will raise awareness of speed limits for vehicles including sedans, buses and trucks on certain roads after making sure they are suitable for such regulations.
The ministry will start to implement the new safety measures on some main roads during the first quarter of 2018. These include the Riyadh-Dammam, Riyadh-Taif and Riyadh-Qassim roads.
Car accidents in Saudi Arabia killed 9,031 people last year, 12 percent of the total number of fatalities in the Kingdom, with an average of over 25 deaths a day — or more than one every hour. The rate of increase is at its highest since 2007.
Between 2006 and 2016, 78,487 people died from car accidents, again constituting 12 percent of deaths in the Kingdom in the same period.
 


Special services to aid pilgrims with special needs

Muslim worshippers perform prayers around the Kaaba, Islam's holiest shrine, at the Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Makkah on August 17, 2018 prior to the start of the annual Hajj pilgrimage in the holy city. (AFP)
Updated 46 min 39 sec ago
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Special services to aid pilgrims with special needs

  • These guides provide clarification for issues concerning Hajj, Umrah, and the Qur’an in Braille language format
  • There are special vehicles for those who need to be transported from the Holy Mosque

MAKKAH: The General Presidency for the Two Holy Mosques has begun services to aid pilgrims with special needs during this year’s Hajj season. Among these services is a small talking watch for the visually impaired. These watches tell the time and prayer times via audio alerts.
Other services provided by the Presidency’s special needs department are allocated entrances to ease access to prayers. These are gates 63 and 68, which were built during the expansion period of the late King Fahd.
There are also specialized paths for pilgrims with disabilities in mobility and the visually impaired with their own dedicated entrances.
Other provisions include a pen that serves as a Qur’an reader for the visually impaired and elderly, and a service for holding and carrying copies of the Qur’an for those who are unable to hold them.
Another service is the distribution of canes for the blind and visually impaired to help guide their path while walking.
A device that assists in Tayamom (dry ablution) is also available.
The special needs unit will also distribute booklets on how to perform Umrah and Hajj, along with guides who can show guests how to pray and explain important rituals to be performed.