UAE Invests $544 Million on Improving Road Links to Saudi Arabia and Qatar
The UAE is ploughing half a billion dollars into improving road connections to neighbouring countries Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Abu Dhabi General Services Company awarded Al Jaber Transport & General Contracting, a member of Al Jaber Group, two contracts totaling more than AED 2 billion ($544 million) for the improvement of Mafraq to Al Ghwaifat border post highway, Section No. 3A and improvement of Mafraq to Al Ghwaifat border post highway, Section No. 3B.
The two sections of the project include the construction of highways and interchanges from Baynounah Forest to Al Mirfa and construction Al Mirfa to Abu Al Abyad.
The highway will be upgraded to dual four lanes and will include dumbbell Interchanges along the route. Relocation and protection of existing services, extension of existing contingency ducts and construction of new contingency ducts, construction of lighting system, construction of storm water drainage system, construction of road furniture.
The agreement was signed by H.E. Eng. Awaidha Murshed Al Murar, Acting CEO of Musanada Company and H.E. Obaid Khaleefa Al Jaber, Chairman of Al Jaber Group in the presence of Engineer Kamal Doss, Executive Director, Al Jaber Transport & General Contracting.
H.E. Obaid Al Jaber commented: “We are proud to be succeed to execute two sections of this strategic project; this is a testimony of our great experience in the infrastructure and construction projects, and our history in the development of major infrastructure projects in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and the UAE.
“We are committed to delivering the highest quality standards and look forward for another great journey with our client throughout the execution of two major sections of the Mafraq - Al Ghwaifat border post highway”.
Construction workers urged to down tools for mental health
The construction industry is being encouraged to stop all work for one hour to focus on the importance of physical and mental health. The plea is part of the ‘Stop. Make a Change.’ (SMAC) campaign which is asking construction organisations across the country t spend an hour thinking about physical health conditions, such as respiratory health, work-related stress, as well as mental health conditions including, but not limited to, depression, anxiety, OCD, and bipolar disorder.
This year, the campaign, which takes place from 11 to 22 October, will focus on individual workers, placing particular emphasis on how they have been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. In addition to encouraging workers to consider their health, safety, and wellbeing, they will also be asked how those areas can be improved
Andy Mitchell, co-chair of the Construction Leadership Council, said: “Our industry workforce is crucial to all of our future successes. We recognise the heroic efforts these workers have undertaken during the pandemic, and want to make sure that, as the industry hopefully emerges from COVID-19, we continue to look after everyone’s health, safety and wellbeing.”
Around 200,000 people took part in the campaign in 2019, which has been running since 2017. SMAC’s website also offers conversation starter kits to help encourage people to talk about their emotions and wellbeing, making it as natural as possible.
Suicide rates in the construction industry are increasing
A study by Glasgow Caledonian University found suicide rates among construction workers had risen to 29 per 100,000 in 2019 from 25 in 2015. Suicide rates among labourers increased by more than 50% from 48 per 100,000 in 2015 to 73 per 100,000 in 2019. However, the rate in non-construction-related industries has fallen, with just under five people per 100,000 taking their own lives in 2019 in comparison to 7 people in 2015.
If you work in the construction industry and need help, The Lighthouse charity provides free 24-hour, seven-days-a-week emotional and wellbeing support for those in the industry through its helpline available on 0345 605 1956 in the UK, or 1800 939 122 in the Republic of Ireland.
Lighthouse also has a free app where workers can access information that can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.