Dubai Police patrols will be equipped with a shock absorber system that gradually stops vehicles suffering from cruise control malfunction. Image Credit: Gulf News

Dubai: Police have equipped two special rescue vehicles with a device to safely bring to a halt cars suffering from cruise control malfunctions, said Maj Gen Mohammad Saif Al Zafein, Chief of Dubai Police’s Traffic Department.

If the trial is successful the device will be fitted on a number of police vehicles.

The move was prompted by five incidents in the past two years where police had to come to the rescue of motorists.

The device, which is attached to the police car, can also be used to stop and pursue vehicles driven by criminals through the use of impact absorption technology.

The development of the shock absorber device and fitting the police car with it came under the directives of Lt Gen Dahi Khalfan Tamim, Chief of Dubai Police.

Al Zafein explained to Gulf News how the device works, adding that it is currently being tested on two cars.

“The device is placed at the rear end of the car so the police car has to get in front of the vehicle which is being pursued. The device will suck the vehicle towards it causing it to collide with the police car which will then stop gradually.

“There are some ready-made accessories in the international market to absorb the impact, however the system under development could be the first of its kind for this purpose,” he said.

“Incidents where the cruise control has malfunctioned have noticeably recurred in the last two years. For this reason we have developed a mechanism that helps deal with the problem without causing any deaths, injuries and even major damage to the vehicles,” said Al Zafein.

He said that following the trial period the device will be fitted on a number of police cars and although there will be a collision, it will not be severe enough to cause major damage.

Al Zafein said that he has inspected a number of cases where the cruise control had malfunctioned and was briefed on the technical reports by insurance companies and major car agencies. “I was also keen to conduct a check-up to see whether the malfunctions occurred as a result of manipulation in the car’s computer or faulty repair by the mechanic at the workshop.”

Al Zafein said that cruise control has existed for the past 20 years and has developed over the past few years in a way that should stop such incidents from happening. However, the reason why the problem has been recurring is because people go to any garage or workshop when faced with cruise control malfunction.

“People should understand that repairing a defect in the cruise control is completely different from changing the oil. It is necessary to go to the agency that manufactured the car in order to ensure that they correctly scan the computer.”