Dubai: Most UAE residents welcome the new radar feature, which will catch people tailgating on Dubai roads starting on July 1.
Major General Mohammad Saif Al Zafein, Assistant to the Dubai Police Chief for Operations Affairs, had announced last month that the radars have the latest technology that can detect tailgating violations accurately, regardless of the speed of the vehicle.
He said that the radar will detect motorists who leave less than five metres of space from the car ahead of them at a speed exceeding 80km/h. Motorists who are caught tailgating will be issued a Dh400 fine and given four black points.
Manar Atef, a 23-year-old I.T. professional, said she likes the idea of radars catching tailgaters because it shows that Dubai Police are trying to find solutions to the tailgating issue.
“Tailgating is the cause of most accidents, and this is from personal experience. Most of the accidents I was about to get into was because I or people around me were not leaving enough space, and I see it happen to other people around me — so I am with this approach to solving this issue,” Manar said.
However, she said, people might get around this by leaving a distance only near the radars and continue to tailgate elsewhere. “Accidents might occur if people suddenly brake right before the radar to avoid being fined.”
She thinks the five metre distance is sufficient. “I measured it and I think it’s easy to abide by.”
Dina Abdullah, a 29-year-old Lebanese media professional, said that this is a step in the right direction.
“Tailgating can really fluster someone driving on the road, I know when I’m driving and someone is very close to my vehicle, I panic a little, and this is not something you want to be doing while you’re trying to concentrate.” Dina said.
She said she thinks that activating the radar to catch tailgating violations will not completely solve the problem, but it’s better than nothing.
If people get fined more often, Dina said, maybe they’ll start to realise that tailgating is a very bad and dangerous habit.
Unlike Manar, Dina thinks the distance should be more in case a person needs to brake immediately.
Dina said the new radar feature will not affect her as she never tailgates, “Tailgating is just plain rude. People need to be courteous to others on the road. Everybody is in a hurry, but we also should not put our lives in danger just to try and get to our destination a few minutes earlier.”
Mohammad Jihad, a 25-year-old Palestinian, said that he sometimes tailgates because he cannot stand slow drivers. “I know it’s wrong, but sometimes I am forced to do so because of slow drivers.”
Jihad said he thinks this will make him think twice before tailgating. “I think this will reduce the number of accidents.”
He added that his only worry is that the radar is not accurate.
Lubna Khalil, a 45-year-old Egyptian mother, said she strongly supports the new move by Dubai Police. “This is a great idea because it will protect people from others who take tailgating lightly. There is no reason to tailgate, it is just rudeness.”
She said that she thinks this will help reduce tailgating, but she thinks that police should intensify the fine for tailgating. “The punishment needs to be more stringent, so people would think twice before doing it.”