Violation: Palm Jumeirah resident says motorists are nnto stopping at pedestrian signals Image Credit: Zarina Fernandes / Xpress

Dubai: Pedestrian crossings in Palm Jumeirah have become death traps for residents here due to callous motorists openly jumping red signals and flouting traffic rules.

Residents are demanding radars at these crossings, claiming motorists regularly drive past red lights with scant regard for people waiting to cross the road.

When XPRESS visited The Palm, we saw many drivers jumping signals between 5 and 6pm.

A Nakheel spokesperson told XPRESS: “Safety at our communities is paramount. We are aware of this challenge and are liaising with Dubai Police to rectify the situation. We encourage motorists to observe traffic laws at all times, for their own safety and for the safety of others.”

Residents. meanwhile are furious. “Some drivers are plain stupid,” said angry Australian expatriate Hannan Bakkar.

“Authorities must install radars at these signals and penalise such drivers. They should be fined and given black points. My husband and I are often left stranded at pedestrian crossings and these drivers simply ignore the red signal. Its very annoying,” said Bakkar.

Patrick Swoboda, an Oceana Tower resident, said the problem could be due to the fact signals on the pedestrian crossing only show two lights – red and green with no orange signal in between. “Such signals are common in Europe, but it could be confusing for drivers from here. It will help if authorities change signals here.”

Speaking to XPRESS, a Shoreline resident said despite the signal in place, she always puts her hand out to physically stop cars and cross the road.

“People just don’t stop their cars. Once I waited for almost five minutes to cross the road. Even though the signal in front of me turned green, cars simply did not stop. Finally I got impatient and put my hand out to stop the cars.

“I wonder if it is ignorance or arrogance by motorists,” she said.

According to Dubai Police, a motorist not giving way at pedestrian crossings can be fined Dh500 and is liable to get six black points. The fine for jumping a red light is Dh800 and he/she will be liable to eight black points. In addition, the driver’s licence can be impounded for 15 days.

“Unless authorities install cameras and radars, motorists will continue to flout rules. They must be penalised and blacklisted,” said Bakkar.

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