New traffic lights installed on the road from Al Taawun roundabout towards Al Qasba. Image Credit: Mazhar Farooqui

Sharjah: Pedestrian fencing is being installed along the stretch of the road divider from the Al Taawun roundabout in Sharjah towards Al Qasba in a bid to prevent people from crossing a street notorious for several deaths.

A traffic signal and zebra crossing are also being installed near the Emirates NBD Bank here.

Heavy toll

Thirty-six people were killed in run-over accidents in Sharjah in 2017.

All victims were pedestrians who were trying to cross roads from undesignated areas.

Residents hope the metal fencing will curb accidents and make their neighbourhood safer.

“Every day scores of people risk their lives trying to dart across the busy road. Most near-misses involve schoolchildren and delivery boys,” said an Indian man who works at the Afamia Supermarket opposite Emirates NBD bank.

Awareness campaign

Last year Sharjah Police fined hundreds of jaywalkers. It also carried out several awareness campaigns to educate the public about the importance of crossing roads from designated spots. However, people continue to flirt with danger. Residents said they have no choice as there is no pedestrian crossing in the area.

‘I am glad that the authorities are finally doing something about it,” said an Arab expat who lives near Sharjah Expo Centre.

Motorists have also welcomed the move.

“Driving on this stretch is a nightmare what with so many people including small children trying to cross the road. This is indeed a good step,” he said.

The Sharjah Roads and Transport Authority (SRTA) announced a zebra crossing in Al Taawun in 2015 as part of a road makeover project. However work on it started only now.