A Detailed Look at Dubai Traffic Fines - The Black Point System
We’ve been getting an overwhelming number of questions from people planning to visit Dubai, and even expats already living there with regards to renting a car and driving your own vehicle.
Considering this, I have gathered a wealth of information that will definitely prove helpful to both avid travelers and tourists.
Out of all the areas of rapid development in Dubai, road and transport frameworks are definitely one of the most eminent priorities.
Dubai is not only infamous for its glitz, glamour and pizzazz, but also its advanced technology and regulations in road and driver etiquettes.
The RTA (Road & Transport Administration) in conjunction with the Dubai Police plays a crucial role in administering these rules to ensure its traffic framework is maintained to merit their overall values.
Dubai being a hub for a number of nationalities experiences several driving styles, but with the use of smart technology and an unrivalled smart point system, traffic violations are kept to a minimum, which ensures a safe driving experience for everyone.
The RTA has an intuitive Black Point and fine system in place to combat reckless driving, and you can easily track and pay for most of these violations on the RTA’s official website itself.
Generally, a certain number of black points are issued along with a fine. The amount of the fine and black points issued is usually pre-defined, and is available for your reference on the website. Violations without a corresponding fine, simply means that it will be decided in court. There are some violations however that may intrigue a new expat or a tourist, but these are in place to ensure absolute safety for anyone on the roads of Dubai.
Common Types of Traffic Violations that Lead to Fines
Opening the left door of a taxi will cost the driver 3 Black points and a fine of 100 DHS (United Arab Emirates Dirham’s). Dubai follows a left hand driving system just like the United States so pavements and sidewalks are usually on the right, and taxi drivers or even privately owned vehicles will usually refuse to open the left side doors. There are roundabouts literally on every corner, and best practice is driving to the right or on the inner most lanes unless of course you need to exit.
If you feel you’re time in invaluable or you need to get somewhere fast, you can opt to overtake with caution from the left lane. If the number of black points exceeds 24 in a year, you are likely to have your license revoked as well as your insurance. Similarly, it is mandatory for all drivers and passengers to wear seatbelts, including children less than 10 years of age. Children under the age of 10 must be fastened into a dedicated car seat, and are not allowed to ride in the front seat.
Unlike western nations, the law in Dubai states that individuals of 18 and under are not responsible for their actions so if they cause any road related accidents, the parent or guardian is answerable in the court of law. There are black points allocated for literally any road misdemeanor you can think off including non-renewal of vehicle registration, failure to maintain safe distance, having tinted windows, driving a noisy vehicle and even for a taxi refusing to carry passengers.
Although the nightlife scene in Dubai is one of the best in the world, it has a zero tolerance for driving with alcohol. Driving with alcohol will set you back 24 points and a fine that is decided in court, which is destined to be staggering amount. If you’re driving a rental car, any fines you attract will be passed on to the rental company only for them to include it in your final invoice.
At present, all fines and black points are imposed on the owner of the vehicle, but the owner does have the option to transfer the points (not fine) to whoever is responsible. Transferring the points is relatively easy, and all you need to do is visit the nearest RTA customer service centre along with the person responsible to have them claim the black points.
You can also conveniently transfer the black points over through a link on the official website. An international license is valid for tourists who wish to drive a standard motor vehicle, but must be converted to a local license if you gain residency.
Speed Limit Violations
There are also stringent fines for violating speed limits in Dubai. These limits are clearly marked on road signs and are hard to miss. In general, speed limits are 40 -60 km, 60-80 km in urban areas and 100 km on highways. The RTA and the Dubai police use a number of state of the art devices to record and persecute traffic violators.
The newly introduced recording device with camera helps gather evidence by taking live photos and recording the entire conversation between police officers and the public. This not only helps maintain transparency and integrity, but helps rule out complaints of illicit approaches that are sometimes used by police officers.
Another innovative way of spotting speeding drivers and issuing fines is with over voice command technology and speed cameras. Police personnel simply send a voice command to the command room with the details of the speeding vehicle, which are them run through the system and a ticket is posted against the vehicle.
There are also a number of navigation systems in Dubai that help avoid traffic ingestion and give you real time updates such as the Dalili Navigation System introduced by the RTA. The most common traffic laws violated by expats include failure to renew car registration, drinking and driving and possessing valid car insurance among others.
Dubai Driving Fines and Statistics at a Glance:
- Driving below the prescribed speed limit will cost you AED200
- Making obscene hand gestures may get you in prison
- 12 black points for knocking someone dead on the road, but 24 if you fail to stop at the scene of an accident and one where injury has been caused
- Using a handheld device will get you a fine of AED200
- It is against the law to drive a vehicle that is not meet safety standards
Tips to Avoid Fines:
- Never jump a red light
- Always use your indicators
- Don’t drink and drive
- Put on your seatbelt
- Park in the right place
While Dubai has a commendable road and traffic system, it also possesses some of the world’s highest death rates in the world so it is recommended that you avoid rush hours when travelling. It doesn’t help that over 75% of Dubai’s population is expatriate so you can expect to see some of the best driving stunts performed here.
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