UAE | Traffic and Transport

RTA to revise speed limits on Dubai roads: official

The RTA would soon finalise the new "Speed Manual" containing details about speed limits on Dubai roads in accordance with the best and modern global standards

  • By Ashfaq Ahmed, Chief Reporter
  • Published: 00:00 August 11, 2010
  • Gulf News

Warning signs about speeding abound
  • Image Credit: Ramesh Menon/Gulf News reader
  • While warning signs about speeding abound, minivans and heavy truck drivers do not seem to care, according to Gulf News reader Ramesh Menon.

Dubai: Speed limits on a number of roads will be revised as part of the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) plan to ensure safety of all road users, said a senior official.

The decision is being taken in light of the recommendations of the Speed Management Strategy Project which is nearing completion. The project was launched in June last year to assess proper speed limits for Dubai roads in accordance with the road design and its utilisation.

"Implementation and compliance with the specified speed limits will contribute to a better traffic flow and minimise road accidents and consequently loss of life and property," said Maitha Obaid Bin Adai, Chief Executive Officer of the RTA's Traffic and Roads Agency.

She said that the RTA would soon finalise the new "Speed Manual" containing details about speed limits on Dubai roads in accordance with the best and modern global standards.

Maitha noted that there was an increase in road accident fatalities as a result of speeding.

Exercise caution

She called on road users to exercise caution during driving and not to exceed the speed limit as speeding risks have become a major cause of fatal traffic accidents in the city.

Maitha said that some 40 people have already lost their lives in 22 fatal accidents in the first quarter of the year. Some 63 people were killed in road accidents in 48 fatal accidents in the three months of last year.

Engineering standards

"Adhering to the fixed driving speed is the most effective way to minimise traffic accidents," she said, adding that the speed fixing mechanism is based on accurate engineering standards including the designed driving speed for a road, actual driving speed level observed by most drivers, urbanisation level on both sides of the road, pedestrian movement, schools and mosques and traffic volume.

She said speeding renders the driver unable to control the steering wheel and deprives him or her of ample opportunity to identify appropriate options when suddenly confronted by a traffic situation.

"We, in the RTA, are seeking to share with all road users the results of traffic accidents analyses and studies to educate and acquaint them with the risks of speeding such as human and material losses," she added.

She said that RTA would launch an awareness programme for safe driving focusing on providing relevant information and statistics together with examples of individuals hospitalised as a result of injuries sustained in traffic accidents.

Do you think the speed limits are suitable? Are there areas that should be reviewed?

Comments (32)

  1. Added 14:59 August 11, 2010

    For those who vote for more strict radar settings an other "procecutive" measuers. You will be the first victims of that measures, paying more fines, however not enjoying more traffic safety. Dont choose "easy ways" Life is more complicated. Generally speaking, compared to many other mega-cities, Dubai traffic is in a very good shape, both in terms of driving culture and in terms of quality and quantity of the roads and interchanges. This is the merit of RTA. I am not a big fan of that authority (recently paid a BULK of cash for my inattention), however I accept and appreciate the EFFORT this office inputs into traffic organization and road constructions. As for the speed limits, they shouldn't be HIGH or LOW, they should be ADEQUATE to certain road quality and traffic conditions. Perhaps, abnormally slow drivers crawling around and changind line ahead of a car cruising at allowed speed cause even more hazard than the "F1 Pilots". To be more specific, I find that Business bay crossing road speed limit 100 km/h is not adequate to the thaffic and high quality of the road. Normal speed at that part is 120 and majority of drivers actually do 120, causing hazards with those who keep 100. I understand there are particular reasons for that speed limit (100 km/h) however real picture is quite different, and this factor cannot be neglected. I whish you all safe drive.

    Alex, Dubai, Russian Federation

  2. Added 14:02 August 11, 2010

    Suggestion : Implement this simple rule. You are supposed to drive in the right most lane which is free. This will push the slow moving traffic to the right lanes freeing one or more fast lanes resulting in smooth traffic for every body.

    Jojo, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  3. Added 13:44 August 11, 2010

    The biggest road problem is not the value of the speed limit, but rather is the fact that values change on same stretches of roads (incl. sheikh zayed road, where the highway changes speed limits multiple times before Ibn Battuta and after World Trade Center) - which is very dangerous for drivers as they do not necessarily adjust their speed accordingly - causing speeding, confusion, and often leading to crashes. I believe speed limits should be revised and standardized across the city. These are reasonable speed limits: multi-lane highway driving at 100 to 110kph; regional roads (roads in urban and suburban ares) at 60 to 75 kph; residential streets at 40 to 55 kph and school zones 20 - 30 kph (during school hours). A 10km/h tolerance level for highway speeds and 5kph tolerance for other roads when it comes to radars. If there are roadworks nearby - a CLEARLY INDICATED reduction of 20kph of the regular speed limit should be in order. With this regularity and fair speeds - accidents on Dubai roads should decrease. I hope the RTA takes into consideration my thoughts.

    Malik Chabou, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  4. Added 13:38 August 11, 2010

    As someone told here. Speed limit should be precise. If it is 100 then fix cameras for 102 and that is it. Not that limit is 100 but it is allowed to drive 120. Another thing - different lines for different vehicles and speed limits - 3 lines on shaikh zayed from left without busses, mini busses, tracks and pickups. Also if you are driving 80 km/h it should be accepted on 3rd line only. People block left lines and generate traffic driving 80-90 and talking by phone in the same time.

    Maciek, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  5. Added 13:31 August 11, 2010

    I appreciate the efforts of RTA, but i feel there is something basically incorrect on speed limits. having traveled to so many countries a mentioned speed limit is the real limit, but here at UAE in Abu Dhabi on particular road 120 KMPH mean 160 KMPH and in dubai on certain roads it means 140 KMPH, a mentioned speed limit is what it must be, why tolerence?

    Aalok, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  6. Added 13:27 August 11, 2010

    Speed limits are not the only solution to reduce the accidents. The main reason for accidents are those who flashes lights and sticks to the back side of the car without leaving a space between cars until the car in front is moved to other lane. Flashing light is confusing the driver and causes accident as well.

    Wafa, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  7. Added 13:20 August 11, 2010

    Dubai must introduce lane based speed limits we have people in first and second lane driving on 70kmh on120kmh road forcesing other drivers to overtake from right which can be very dangerous. Setting minimum speed limit hasnt changed much since the difference in minimum and maximum is huge.

    Akash, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  8. Added 13:04 August 11, 2010

    It's not the speed limits that are causing the horrific accidents. It's the reckless driving and lack of respect for other cars on the road. I'm talking about driving too close, cutting-off, wild lane changing, no lane discipline, last-minute dash to an exit, etc... Drivers here just think they own the road. If drivers were mindful and respectful of others, then current speed limits would not be an issue. Driving safe is not just about not speeding.

    Nadim, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  9. Added 13:03 August 11, 2010

    I just hope that when they are changed it gets announced properly instead of all of a sudden getting flashed and fined for speeding for 600-800 dhs per fine. Sign-age and indicators should be put on the road and then implementation starts

    Sherry, Abu Dahbi, United Arab Emirates

  10. Added 12:44 August 11, 2010

    Excellent move by RTA. Most of the drivers are either confused or unaware about the extra 20% speed allowed, I suggest that the speed limit should be limited to what appears on the sign board or extra 5Km/Hr maximum. Rather that reaching places, reaching destination SAFELY is more important. I am a regular user of all roads in Dubai. Some times in the evening on Al Khail road (not sure of mornings) you can see the busses carrying labors use the first line, which I learned that they do this as part of racing. It seems that we forgot the racing accident happened couple of years ago on Shaik Zayed Road. RTA should keep an eye on these racers or another fatal one is awaiting Dubai. On the other hand, first line users on Al Khail road has to be taught how to drive, they approach you like suicide squads with their vehicle filled with explosives, some of them don’t even have the tail light’s working and no side indicators when changing lines, they only have their head lights working. Instead of placing more cameras, RTA should build watch towers and monitor the road users from distance.

    Shibu, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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