Proceedings of the 24th World International Traffic Medicine Association Congress, Qatar 2015
  • ISSN: 2223-0440
  • EISSN:


Annually 1.2 million deaths occur globally due to road traffic injuries; additionally, 20-50 million are injured or disabled ("Global status report", 2013). Concomitant with rapid socioeconomic growth, infrastructure development and increased vehicle ownership, injury, disability and mortality due to road traffic collisions are high in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. This is also true for Qatar where road traffic collisions are one of the leading causes of premature mortality (Bener et al., 2012). Road traffic mortality in Qatar (2010) is 14 per 100,000 population. Young adult males are disproportionately affected ("Global status report", 2013). Laws pertaining to seat belt and mobile phone use exist; however, there is a lack of enforcement. We collected data regarding seat belt and mobile phone use while driving in college students, majority of whom were in the age group 18-24 years. The data was collected via a self-administered survey in two colleges. The total sample consisted of 419 students but 321 admitted to driving a vehicle. Overall seat belt use among drivers was reported at 51% “always”, 41% “sometimes”, and 8% “never”. Overall mobile phone use was reported at 23% “always”, 64% “sometimes”, and 13% “never”. Females were significantly more likely than males to use seat belt and less likely to use mobile phone while driving. Additionally, drivers at or below the age of 25 were significantly more likely to use seat belt and less likely to use mobile phone than those over 25 years old (Table 1). The results give us reliable estimates of seat belt and mobile phone use prevalence in young adult drivers in Qatar. Increased awareness and enforcement of road safety laws are required to control this epidemic of road traffic injury, disability and fatality. These findings are of public health importance and deserve our attention.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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