When BlackBerry servers crashed between Tuesday and Thursday last week, owners of the popular business phones were left without a tool they've come to rely on. At the same time, the server crash could have made roads in the Middle East that much safer.

The National reports that traffic accidents in Dubai dropped 20 percent compared to historical averages during the blackout. In Abu Dhabi, accidents dropped by 40 percent, and there were zero fatalities. If you're thinking that this isn't a significant enough sample to show that smart phones and distracted driving are inexorably linked, consider this: There is an accident in Dubai every three minutes.

Dubai police chief Dahi Khalfan Tamim pointed out to The National that the accidents resulting from distracted driving "range between minor and moderate ones, but at times they are deadly." Officer Al Harethi took it a step farther, adding "the roads became much safer when BlackBerry stopped working."

While the loss of BlackBerry service was no doubt a major inconvenience, these real-life statistics once again show that smart phones and driving just don't mix.


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