Abu Dhabi motorists told to keep well away from school buses as children return to class

Police warn drivers to stay five metres behind buses on school run ahead of anticipated heavy traffic next week

Emergency services attend the scene of a crash in Abu Dhabi last September that left 47 people, mostly school children, injured. Two school buses and a public bus collided on Khaleej Al Arabi Street. Photo courtesy Abu Dhabi Police

Motorists must stop and keep five metres back from school buses dropping off pupils to avoid accidents, Abu Dhabi said, ahead of what is expected to be heavy traffic as term starts after the summer break on Sunday.

Abu Dhabi Police told drivers to keep their distance to avoid crashes.

Tailgating is one of the main causes of accidents and deaths in the emirates and common on the highways and in rush hour.

“We have prepared a plan, which includes traffic, security and community awareness, targeting the various segments of the school community, such as students, parents and school administrators, to improve their safety during the new school year, which will start next Sunday,” said Brigadier Ali Khalfan Al Dhaheri, director-general of central operations.

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“We have completed preparations for the new school year and we will intensify traffic patrols, especially at intersections near schools.

"A specialist awareness team will also guide children to the meeting point of school buses and improve their awareness of traffic rules and regulations, to ensure their safety and improve the flow of traffic.

“Motorists need to come to a complete halt when the ’stop’ side arm of the school bus is open in either direction, at a distance no less than five metres, to ensure that students can cross safely and securely.

“This will contribute towards providing a safe, as well as stable, educational and community environment in the society, which has achieved exceptional standards internationally in terms of security and safety.”