Driving a vehicle is the best way to get around in the UAE, thanks to the well-designed roads and fuel. The great roads tend to make drivers overconfident and sometimes even reckless while driving, causing them to overspeed or rush to beat an orange light. Over the years, the UAE's Roads and Transport Authority has introduced several rules and initiatives to improve road safety and reduce traffic casualties. The federal traffic laws of the UAE were last amended in July of 2017 with changes to fines, black points, license suspensions, and jail terms for those who break the law. The government has introduced a 4-point strategy, which can be summed up as enforcement, education, engineering, and emergency medical services, to improve road safety.
Read More: How To Apply For Your Driver’s License In UAE
The first and easiest thing for anyone travelling in a vehicle to do is to wear their seat belt correctly. The driver of the vehicle may be fined up to AED 400 and given four black points if any passenger is found to be flouting the seat belt rule.
DON’T TRY TO BEAT THE TRAFFIC LIGHT
It's tempting to speed up a bit in order to try and beat the orange light and cross the traffic signal so that you don’t have to sit and wait a few minutes for it to turn green. There is a good chance that you’ll be caught crossing when the light is red, which will attract a fine of AED 1,000, 12 penalty points, and your vehicle being impounded for a month.
Being distracted by your phone, changing the music, turning around to see what your kids are doing in the backseat, etc. can lead to you not seeing something ahead of you that could cause an accident. Using your phone while driving can attract a fine of AED 400 and four black points.
DO NOT OVERSPEED
Exceeding the speed limit set can attract fines depending on the code violation. For example, exceeding the maximum speed limit by more than 80 km/hour will get you a fine of 3000 AED, 23 black points and your car could be impounded for up to 60 days. Driving below the minimum speed limit can attract a fine of AED 400.
MAINTAIN ADEQUATE DISTANCE
Maintaining a safe distance from the car in front of you gives you ample time to react if something happens. Tailgating is considered a violation and can attract a fine of AED 400 and 4 black points.
HAZARD AND INDICATOR LIGHTS
Always use the indicator to inform other drivers of your intention to change lanes. You’ll be surprised at the number of drivers who do not follow this rule. There are also instances where a driver will ignore and not give way to a driver who has indicated he needs to shift lanes. Both these offenses attract a fine of 200 AED.
STOPPING FOR PEDESTRIANS
The traffic police take this very seriously as they want to protect vulnerable pedestrians from speeding drivers. Failure to do this will garner a fine of AED 500 and six black points. Stopping your car over a zebra crossing will also result in a fine of AED 500.
THOU SHALL NOT OFFEND
Using hand gestures and shouting swear words at other drivers while on the road is frowned upon in the UAE. This action may attract a fine or imprisonment.
This must be observed diligently as the roads are good and traffic moves fast. Change lanes by using the indicator light and only after you check your mirrors properly for traffic in the lane you intend to move to. Make sure there is plenty of space between you and the next vehicle and keep an eye out for merging lanes.
Anyone who has seen the movie “Final Destination” will know to keep their distance from trucks. Trucks have multiple blind spots due to their size, which causes the truck driver to not see vehicles either behind or beside them. Never brake suddenly in front of a truck, as they take longer to slow down due to the heavy load they are pulling.
Rain, fog, and dust storms are a few of the bad weather conditions that can arise in the UAE. It is advisable to educate yourself on the precautions you need to follow to drive safely. In adverse weather conditions, reduce your speed and use fog lights to mitigate the issues caused by reduced visibility.
Read More: Safe Driving Tips For Senior Citizens Of The UAE
KEEP YOUR EMOTIONS IN CHECK
Road rage is something that most drivers experience while driving, especially when another driver is at fault. It behooves you to remain cool under all circumstances and avoid doing anything that will distract you and take your hands off the wheel.
All in all, it is pretty simple to stay safe on the beautiful roads of the UAE if you follow the rules and drive with a cool head. It may seem like there are a lot of rules to follow while driving in the UAE, but most of them are based on common sense and doing the right thing to ensure the smooth and safe flow of traffic.
SERVICE YOUR CAR AT CARS24 IN THE UAE
Following the rules is not enough when driving, you should also ensure your car is in good condition by getting it serviced regularly. Visit CARS24’s MRL facility to get your car tuned up for improved performance and safety. Cars sold by CARS24 undergo a stringent 150-point quality check and a thorough refurbishment process before being listed on the site.
We also provide a 7-day return policy and 2 years of warranty for every vehicle purchased on the site, ensuring complete peace of mind for all our customers.
What are the top five traffic rules to follow in the UAE?
All passengers should wear their seatbelts.
Do not use your phone while driving.
Use indicators while changing lanes.
Do not drink and drive.
Always drive within the prescribed speed limit.
Do pedestrians have the right of way in the UAE?
Yes, pedestrians have the right of way at zebra crossings, and vehicle drivers must stop to let them cross the road. Failure to comply with this rule can result in both a fine and black points. Jaywalking is illegal, and pedestrians are expected to cross only at zebra crossings.
What happens if you drive under the influence in the UAE?
Driving under the influence can result in your vehicle being impounded by the police for 60 days and having your driving license suspended for one year. In addition to this, you will also have to pay a fine, which will be decided by the court. You will also be slapped with 23 black points.