Abu Dhabi: Four years ago a driver rammed into him, leaving him a paraplegic. Today, at the opening of GCC traffic week, he was honoured for exemplary driving.
"My humble request to drivers is to slow down and respect traffic laws," said 33-year old Mosabah Saeed Al Rumaithi, a retired army officer, struggling to contain his emotions. "Mistakes on the road may not just harm your life but also that of innocent others."
Al Rumaithi, who worked as a Hawk missile operator, has used a wheelchair since the crash. He, however, has been driving his specially modified car in which the accelerator and brake are placed next to the steering wheel, for four years after the accident.
Al Rumaithi has not committed a single traffic offence. "I feel very proud...", he told Gulf News.
He vividly remembers the day he was thrown out of his vehicle after a young driver rammed into his car. "The accident changed my life… I became paraplegic due to a spine injury. A young driver, who apparently was racing with his friends, crashed into my car," Al Rumaithi said, taking off his cap to reveal a long scar.
"The driver died on the spot due to a severe head injury. I was also told that the boy had received his licence less than two months before the accident," Al Rumaithi said.
He underwent treatment in Germany for about a year. "I saw people like me driving and it inspired me," Al Rumaithi said.