Dubai: By around 5pm every day, I leave work to hit the gym, followed by a healthy dinner and relaxing time at home. It is a routine I try and follow most days. Work, gym, sleep, repeat.
On Tuesday it was the same. I left at 5pm and I had a group workout session at my gym at 6pm. My destination was my regular fitness club at the Lakes. As I was approaching the road leading into Tecom (from the Sheikh Zayed Road) there was a long trail of cars lined at the Saudi German Hospital signal.
I felt a sudden thud, someone had hit my car on the front passenger door. It was a sports car, and in the tense moment there were three things going through my mind.
“Is there a dent in my car? How long will it take for the cops to come to my rescue? And am I going to miss my favourite workout?” Surely the order of my questions do not reflect my priorities in life, or maybe… they do.
The driver of the sports car who hit my SUV made his quick apologies and admitted to his mistake. This was key in me getting out of the unpleasant sitaution in a matter of minutes.
After a quick look at the damage on my car – all it needs is a good paint job. No dents and no broken doors.
What to do next
Move your car
One of the first rules in a traffic accident is move the vehicles involved to a safe location so that they do not obstruct traffic on the roads.
Reporting the accident
The next thing to do is call Dubai Police on 999.
If it is a minor accident and the two parties involved in the accident mutually agree on who is liable for the accident, Dubai Police will tell you to handle the situation yourselves, through their app. The whole process takes not more than 10 minutes maximum.
Here is a step by step process on how to do it.
1. Download the Dubai Police app
Click on the app and it will take you to the home page, which looks something like this.
Other than such accident cases, there are a number of requests you can make on the Dubai Police app. For example, the app can be used to request a police clearance certificate, pay traffic fines, request permission for night work at commercial premises, and of course, report a traffic accident.
2. Tap "Reporting a traffic accident on the app"
Go ahead and click on the ‘Report Traffic Accident’ and it will take you to another page. On this page the app once again reminds you to move your vehicle to a safe location along with the other vehicle/s involved in the accident so there is no obstruction to traffic. The app asks you to select the total number of cars involved in the accident. Once you do that, click on the next button.
At this point you will be required to do the following:
- Scan details of the vehicle plate number
- License number
- Fill out some details such as the vehicle plate number, license number
- Picture of the damages to the vehicles
- Tick if these details pertain to the liable vehicle or of the party on the receiving end!
- Last, don't forget to mention your mobile number and email address
Time taken for the whole process
So, as I mentioned earlier, I left Al Wasl at 5pm. I reached the Saudi German Hospital signal by around 5.10pm. It was around a minute later that my car was hit. We moved to a safe location by 5.15 pm. It took us ten minutes to figure out the app. And guess what, I had a detailed report sent out to me by the Dubai Police at exactly 5.55pm.
Of course I left the scene as soon as we registered the accident on the app. So by the time the Dubai Police report came in I was already at the gym preparing for my workout.
It’s great how Dubai authorities go by daily nuisances the smart way. The Dubai Police app can help you in unforeseen circumstances such as this one, so make sure you add it to the roster of apps on your smartphone.
In case your scenario doesn't go this way, and one or both of the parties cannot agree on solution, the Dubai Police will come to the location once you call 999. All parties involved must move their cars away from traffic to a safe spot and wait for the police. Once there, the police will decide who is at fault – most commonly, blame will be appointed with the driver behind. He will issue the Police Report in Arabic, as is the standard practice. The due process after this then will be followed.