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10 tips for driving safely in fog in the UAE

The safest way to drive in fog is to not drive at all. But read our guide to safe driving

Driving in fog
Image Credit: GN Archive
Driving in fog is best avoided. But if you must then you should follow these guidelines
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Fog can be a very serious problem as reduced visibility makes spotting driving hazards much harder, if not even impossible. 

Fog alert in the UAE

Knowing how to deal with foggy conditions is extremely important, so follow our guide.

1. Only drive if you have to

If you wake up to a thick blanket of fog then the best thing to do is send a text message (even a picture message) to your boss telling them that you are going to be late in. Any boss who has a problem with this isn’t worth working for. Your safety is the most important thing, so wait for the fog to clear before you set off.

Listen to the traffic reports on the radio or check #UAETraffic and #UAEWeather on Twitter before setting off.

2. Stop at a service station

If you set off from home and all is well and clear, but encounter fog en route, then slow down and pull into the next service station and wait for the fog to clear. It may take an hour or so, so have a coffee and let your boss know that you’ve stopped until it is safe to continue your journey.


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Is it worth the risk? If you're concerned about safety, call your boss 


3. Slow down

Driving along a road at 120km/h in fog is dangerous and irresponsible. Reduce your speed to no more than 50km/h and stay over to the inside lane. If the fog is very thick, slow down to 40km/h.

Be on guard at all times.

4. Use dipped headlights

If you are driving in fog, you must turn your headlights on. Make sure they are dipped (i.e. normal). Driving with your main beams on (denoted by the blue symbol on your dashboard) is dangerous to oncoming traffic as it dazzles other motorists.

Never drive through fog with your main beams on, and if your car has automatic headlights, make sure they are on, don’t assume.

5. Turn your fog lights on


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This is the symbol for the fog light in your car. Make sure you know where it is


Not all cars come with front fog lights, but all modern cars are equipped with rear fog lights - as is the law. They are a legal requirement in most parts of the world. Turn your fog lights on and keep them on until you are clear of the fog.

Turn them off when you are out of the fog as they will dazzle other motorists.

The switch is usually located on the indicator stalk, or headlight knob. Before setting off you should check your car’s manual so you know where the fog light switch is (they’re never hidden).

6. Do NOT drive with your hazard lights on

There is a lot of confusion when it comes to driving with your hazard lights on in fog. Some people do it to make themselves more visible, which is a good intention, but not wise and can cause an accident.

Hazard lights are designed to warn other motorists that you are stationary, or to warn other motorists of a road hazard.

If a motorist behind you spots your hazard lights are on, he may panic thinking that you have stopped (don’t forget that visibility will be poor) and he may brake sharply. This could cause an accident, especially with the motorist who is behind him, and so on.


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Never drive with your hazard lights on. They are meant to signal a stopped cars


7. Turn your heater on

If it’s foggy then it is likely going to be cool, which means that condensation may build up on the inside of your car. This will retard your visibility more so. The heater will help keep your windows clear.

8. Listen

Turn your radio off and open your window a little. Listen carefully to your environment outside of the car. You may hear another vehicle that you can’t see, or you may hear something or someone warning you to stop. You’ll be driving at a reduced speed so wind noise won’t be too much of a problem with the window down.

9. Keep your distance

Don’t get too close to the car in front. If he has to stop sharply then you could crash into the back of him. Stay well back.

10. Avoid changing lanes

Don’t change lanes unless you have to. Stay over to the inside (right lane) and don’t hurry yourself. Constantly changing lanes is potentially dangerous as it could cause an accident. Remember that motorists behind you may not have seen you.

Pick a lane and stay in it.

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