Child Safety Seats & more thoughts on driving in the UAE

My 6 months in the UAE have brought me great appreciation for US driving. Yes, there may be bad traffic & tailgating, but it’s all within reason. In the UAE, we say that there are 2 levels of accidents: super minor & fatal. I wish I could say that we meant it entirely as a joke, but it seems that accidents are a minor fender bender or someone was killed on impact. It’s horrible. Most of the time I’m convinced that if you get into a car accident in the UAE, the chance of an ambulance making it to you in time is so small. And all of this leads to my point…

That people drive like crazies in the UAE. The reason that an ambulance might not make it to the scene of a crash in time is because other motorists are driving on the shoulder (where the government has actually placed speed bumps…another worthy discussion) so that they can get to their own pressing engagements.

Now given all of this knowledge, wouldn’t you expect the parents and caregivers of children here to calculate that into their daily lives and invest in child safety seats? I suppose real problem with my question is that I used the phrase “wouldn’t you expect”. Anytime I use that phrase here, I am forced to remind myself that nothing is what you expect in the UAE. Back to the point at hand…

People do not invest in child safety seats because they are still investigating whether child seats are effective in preventing injury to children in accidents. All the while, parents allow their children to ride in the car unrestrained and essentially hopping all around the car. That is, if the children are sitting their parents laps as they pull a Britney! It’s really astonishing…

According to “Propaganda Weekly” (or one of the weekly newpapers here), doctors are starting to give away child seats to parents with newborns…

I guess that’s something…


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