One of the major dilemmas that Kingdom of Saudi Arabia encounters since decades is Road Traffic Accidents (RTAs). This leads to sequence of problems besides the huge number of deaths such as economic, social and health problems. According to the official statistics done by Saudi Health Ministry, number of accidents in 2011 reached 544,000 accidents that resulted in more than 39,000 injuries and 7,135 deaths. In 2014, more than 598,000 car accidents happened and these numbers have been increasing year by year. As a result, $7 billion losses in the economy each year (World Health Organization, (WHO) and Saudi Arabia, 2006-2014). Moreover, one third of government hospitals capacity (beds) occupied by road traffic accident injuries.
The government started gathering information to determine the causes of RTAs and it divided these causes into two categories as following:
1. Increase of number of cars
2. Fast development which requires new developed traffic system
3. Different cultures and habits from people to people
1. Driver’s error and attribute
2. Exceeded speed and not following the traffic rules. (e.g. Drifting and bad young people’s attributes)
3. Road safety and vehicle condition
Currently, the government is going in the right way to deal with causes to be decreased. It has been developing the public transportation to minimize the number of cars. Also, it adopted huge awareness program to educate drivers specifically the youths. Finally, it intends to establish racetracks for young drivers to practice their hobbies (Drifting, race, etc…) under experts’ supervision and safety conditions.In reality, the government focused on the effects of RTAs rather than the causes by improving the traffic roads and building new hospitals to increase government hospitals beds. For example, the government hospital beds increased from 37,114 in 2011 to 58,126 in 2014. Furthermore, the government tried to control the drivers and their attributes by establishing new violations fees and distributing the speed cameras along the roads. However, it is obvious that the car accidents increase year by year which means that the control imposed by the government does not affect and is not effective at all.
Based on IMT theory, the control and focusing on the final conditions (effects) regardless the initial conditions (causes) does not influence. In contrast, collecting the enough information that make the initial conditions and managing all of these very well will help to predict the final conditions and grant huge capability to avoid them.
Saudi Health Ministry http://www.mohe.gov.sa/EN
World Health Organization, (WHO). Country Cooperation Strategy for WHO and Saudi Arabia: (2006–2014)