Harsh new penalties for tailgating have been implemented from January 15 in Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi police have announced that motorists who engage in the unsafe practice will be facing a stiff fine of AED 400 and four black points. In a statement that Abu Dhabi Police, they made it clear that they would be activating the tailgating smart detection system from January 15, 2020. The system would not be activated during traffic congestion. The Abu Dhabi traffic department also revealed that the dangerous practice was also the cause of 13 percent of traffic accidents in the first quarter of 2018.
Lt Col Dr Abdullah Al Suwaidi, Deputy Director of the Traffic Department at the Traffic and Patrols Department said that motorists should leave sufficient distance between vehicles so that drivers get enough time to stop in a safe manner in the event of any sudden incident. Abu Dhabi Police had recently conducted an awareness campaign through social networking sites in order to encourage motorists to follow traffic rules. As part of the campaign, which was called “Give Your Comment”, the department also invited suggestions from the public on measures that could be implemented to make the roads in the UAE safer. Previously, the Director of Traffic and Patrol at Abu Dhabi Police announced that the reason for the new traffic campaign was to “protect drivers and other road users from serious traffic accidents that can result in human and material losses”.
Abu Dhabi Police will send out text messages to notify violating drivers and warn them about the fines in case of repeated tailgating instances.
According to the Ministry of Interior, tailgating is a dangerous practice that involves not maintaining a “safe” distance from the vehicle that is in front of a motorist. The police said that the 2- second rule will be applied while driving on highways which means that a motorist should always allow at least 2 seconds for stopping from the vehicle in front, and this time should be doubled in bad conditions. Not doing this could have tragic consequences. Motorists were also cautioned to drive safely and to leave the far left lane for vehicles which are traveling at a high speed in all situations. They were also advised not to drive slower than the designated speed limit.
The main reasons that motorists gave for indulging in tailgating, according to recent surveys carried out by Gulf News were rushing to reach their destination, slow drivers on the fast lane and being unaware of traffic rules.
According to the UK Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency, in case you are being tailgated, the steps to take are as follows:
• Ease your foot off the accelerator.
• Move into the inside lane, if it is safe to do so – make sure to apply the two second rule to any vehicle you move behind.
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