Inaugural Abu Dhabi Road Safety Conference Sets High Bar for Saving Lives
In keeping with its dedication to road safety around the world, the International Road Federation developed the program for the highly successful Abu Dhabi International Road Safety Forum 2013, held on May 21, 2013. The United Arab Emirate’s capital city of Abu Dhabi has become a strong leader in road safety for the region and this prestigious event, held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal, furthered the city’s renown. According to IRF President Patrick Sankey, the event “gathered some of the greatest minds and leaders in road safety worldwide.” IRF Executive Vice President Gabriel Sanchez was recognized as one of many speakers at the forum, along with Eng. Eisa Al Mazrouie, executive director of infrastructure sector for Abu Dhabi Municipality, Ibrahim al Hamoudi, senior transport planner at the Urban Planning Council; Bader Al Qamzi, Department of Transport integrated planning manager, and Dr. Hala Sakr Ali, director of WHO regional office for the Eastern Mediterranean, United Nations, as well as many other important participants.
Policy makers, road safety experts, government representatives and student engineers gathered to take part in discussions concerning Abu Dhabi’s vision to achieve zero road fatalities by the year 2030. The Forum covered various crucial areas of road safety including, Road Safety Strategies & Action Plans, Emergency / Incident Management, Vulnerable Road Users, Data Collection and Road Safety Audits, and Public Education Campaigns and Community Activities. The conference featured policy initiatives and several new technologies that were in the process of being undertaken by the Abu Dhabi government to enhance road safety in the line of the Emirate’s “Vision 2030”.
The IRF developed the program in support of the Decade of Action for Road Safety, which began May 11, 2011. According to H.E. Khalifa Al Mazroui, General Manager, Municipality of Abu Dhabi City, “the forum emphasizes Abu Dhabi’s commitment to support the global plan under the United Nation’s Decade of Action for Road Safety.” The convening of this event serves as the first of a series of increasingly larger and more important road safety events to come. The 2014 Abu Dhabi International Road Safety Summit is planned for March 2014 and according to Sanchez, “with this event and future activities — this and next year — the Emirate of Abu Dhabi becomes a beacon and a role model for the entire region in terms of its commitment to the U.N. Decade of Action.”