Camels involved in 97% of Saudi traffic accidents

The kingdom is spending billions of riyals building fences to keep its 500,000 camels off roads
Camels involved in 97% of Saudi traffic accidents
(AFP/Getty Images)
By Courtney Trenwith
Mon 30 Mar 2015 11:54 AM

Camels were involved in 97 percent of all traffic accidents in Saudi Arabia, according to a study by King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.

The remarkable figure is indicative of problems faced by the kingdom as it becomes more developed in cities while still attempting to maintain some traditions.

The Ministry of Transport was spending billions of riyals to reduce the number of camels straying onto roads, including building fences alongside highways, Arab News reported.

There were about 500,000 camels in the kingdom, the Arabic daily said. About 43 percent of them were in the capital Riyadh.

The total cost of accidents in the kingdom was forecast to reach SR24bn ($6.4bn) in 2018, up from SR13bn in 2005, the report found.

The most recent World Health Organization figures show there were about 6500 traffic-related deaths in the kingdom in 2009, up from about 4000 in 2004.

WHO also estimates more than 1 million people died or have suffered serious injuries from traffic accidents since 1970, more than 4 percent of the population.

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