The United Arab Emirates is always keen to provide on road safety to its motorists and other road users. Therefore, it always tries to make amendments in its old driving rules and incorporates new road laws for the same. The constant efforts put by the government of UAE has not only reduced the number of accidents in the past few years but also has made driving quite smooth.
On the same line, the government has also mandated the car insurance in UAE and has asked the insurance providers to include the facility of online car insurance in UAE. Moreover, the concerned authorities of the United Arab Emirates time to time organize various road-safety awareness campaigns.
Despite several efforts, the driving death rate in UAE is the highest. One reason responsible for the same can be the reckless driving of the local drivers of UAE. However, the basic law to avoid road accidents in UAE is to follow traffic rules while driving. If you keep the driving laws of UAE in mind, then the chances of involving in any on-road accident get reduced automatically.
In this article we are going to discuss the basic driving laws of UAE:
- Laws for Seat Belt: Because of the higher rate of road accidents, it is compulsory to wear seatbelts in your moving car.
- Documents to Have: Anyone who wishes to drive in UAE should have an international driving license with their own driving license. If you are one of the expatriate residents of the United Arab Emirates, then you must have the local driving license.
- Drink and Drive: Because of the safety reasons and due to the religious restrictions on drinking alcohol, the tolerance limit for drinking and driving is zero in UAE. So, never take a risk of drinking and driving on the roads of this country as doing so may directly take you to the jail. Never take any risk, and prefer taking a cab after drinking.
- Minimum Age of Driving: The minimum age to drive in the UAE is 18 years. However, some car rental companies may need you to be more than 25 years and have driving experience of at least of a few years. There are some companies who may allow you to drive a rental car at the age of 23, but for that matter, you have to pay young driver’s excess fees.
- Speed Limits: The speed limit varies throughout UAE. There are some main roads wherein you can drive at the speed of 140km per hour, whereas some main roads allow you to drive at the speed of 100 or 120km per hour. For built-up areas the usual permissible speed limit is 80km per hour, however, it is slower for busy areas.
- Fines: For a minor offense, the traffic police may issue a fine notice to you, but for serious on-road offense, summon from court or suspension of the license can be issued.
- Safety Rules for Children: In a few recent years, the on-road safety rules have been significantly changed in the UAE in order to reduce the death rate. One of which is to ensure the safety of the children who are traveling in the cars. According to the safety rules for children, it is restricted for any child below 12 years to sit in the front seat of the car while it is moving. Children who are sitting in the rear seat and are below the age of 12 years must sit in the booster seats or restraints.
The road rules in the UAE are developed to reduce the rate of on-road accidental death, however many of you ignore these rules. Mentioned below are the road rules that everyone who drives on the roads of UAE must follow:
- Rules for Towing: There is no specific towing law in the UAE.
- Use of Mobile Phone during Driving: It is illegal to talk on a mobile phone while driving in the UAE. However, you can take the help of hands-free kit for talking when you are driving.
- Speed Cameras: To trap your driving speed, there are both fixed and mobile cameras in place at the United Arab Emirates. These cameras are strictly enforced to issue fine if the speed limit of your card is exceeded. The fine for speeding has increased in recent years.
- Sign of the Motorway: The road signs in the UAE are same as you will find in Britain; moreover these signs are very simple to understand. The sign of the motorway has blue color in the background with white writing. These signs are displayed in both English and Arabic.
- Toll Roads: There are a few roads, highways, and bridges in the United Arab Emirates that have a toll. For example, the Sheikh Zaya Road and Al Garhoud Bridge have crossing toll.
- Traffic Lights: The UAE follows the Vienna Convention for traffic lights and hence it is easier for the US and EU drivers to understand the traffic light rules here.
The big cities of UAE have expensive parking and many times it may become difficult for you to find a parking there. However, you always have a choice to park your car on the streets if there is any space available. The suburbs and smaller towns have parking and most of the times it is free.
- Paid Parking: In big cities and towns it is recommended to go for garage parking as parking on the streets are difficult to find and are busy most of the times. If you get any space, you can use mobile and avail the service known as mParking or you can pay by using a machine. The mParking application also warns you in case of your parking ticket expiry.
- Disabled Parking: For disabled drivers, there is no special parking in the United Arab Emirates. However, if you want assistance, then the attendants at the parking can help you and provide you a convenient spot to park your car.
- Enforcement: The traffic police enforce overdue and bad parking with fines and tickets. Moreover, the car that is causing any kind of obstruction can be towed.
Since, there is right hand driving in the UAE and cars overtake from the left, so it may become difficult for the drivers of various Asian countries to drive. Therefore, it is advised to be very careful while driving on the roads of the cities of this country which has migrants of almost 200 other countries. As mentioned previously, the government is doing its best to reduce the number of road accidents, but it is up to us – the drivers- to follow these rules and stay safe. Apart from this, to overcome the financial loss that you may encounter due to any damage to your car or any third-party as a result of a road accident, it is suggested to get a cheap car insurance policy in UAE.