Harsher penalties loom for Abu Dhabi road offenders

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UAE’s Ministry of Interior (MoI) has announced that the penalties for drivers who do not give way to emergency vehicles will increase significantly in the very near future.

Police in Abu Dhabi will patrol the roads in both marked and unmarked vehicles and utilize their impressive network of smart cameras to look out for drivers who do not move out of the way for fire trucks, ambulances, and police cars.

The increase in penalties come into effect on the first of July and will entail an AED 3,000 fine, 6 traffic points, and the possibility of having your vehicle impounded for 30 days. The driving force behind the increase is, according to the Ministry, to improve road and traffic safety and to decrease the number of road traffic deaths. While the harsher penalty is a step in the right direction, all road users will have to up their own level of road safety in order for a new policy to have the greatest possible impact.

Don’t ever drive without a seatbelt

During the course of 2018, 149 people lost their lives in car accidents on the roads of Abu Dhabi. A seatbelt is your first line of defense against injury or death while driving. It is for this reason that it is mandatory for both the driver and all passengers in a car to be wearing them.

If it is found that seat belts were not worn the driver will be fined AED 400 and slapped with 4 traffic points. Children up to the age of four must sit in a special child safety seat whereas the front-seat passenger must be older than ten years and at least 145cm tall.

No place for reckless driving in the UAE

If you drive recklessly in the UAE you will incur a fine of up to AED 2,000, 23 traffic points, and the possibility of having your car impounded for up to 60 days.  As important as it is to always drive safely, so too is it to ensure that your car remains roadworthy and registered. ChicMoto.com also suggests taking out an extended warranty on your vehicle where possible to make it easier for you to keep it in tip-top shape.

Many drivers, especially expats, are not aware of the UAE registration process and end up having to pay huge fines. While an unregistered vehicle does not automatically make it less safe, a vehicle has to undergo a roadworthiness test before it can be registered. This system ensures that the vehicles on the roads of Abu Dhabi are as safe as possible.

No sympathy for drunk drivers

Drunk driving is seen in an extremely serious light not only in the UAE but the rest of the world as well. If you want to stay safe on the road it is of the utmost of importance to never get behind the steering wheel after consuming alcohol. Not only do you put both your own life and the lives of other road users in danger, but you may also find yourself behind bars for the offense. Abu Dhabi drivers caught driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs will have their license suspended for a year as well as a possible fine and jail time.

Keeping safe on the roads should be a top priority of every driver.  By following basic safety procedures and practicing common sense you can avoid becoming just another road accident statistic.

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