The buffer that allows drivers in Abu Dhabi to exceed the posted speed limit by up to 20kph without penalty could be reduced, but officials have not set a date.
At the moment, the 20kph buffer stays, according to Maj Gen Mohammed Al Zafeen, director of the Dubai Police traffic department and head of the Federal Traffic Council.
In the future, a reduction will be done gradually, starting with heavy vehicles, buses and taxis, he said.
“Maybe in the near future we will reduce the speed buffer,” he said. “I believe heavy vehicles and buses should only have a buffer of 5kph to 10kph, while taxis should have a 10kph to 15kph buffer.”
Speed variation and a reduction of the number lanes on highways are the main causes of accidents in the UAE, he said.
“We at the Federal Traffic Council are working on a unified traffic law, including unifying speed limits across the emirates,” Maj Gen Al Zafeen said.
“Across the Emirates, there are different roads with varying speed limits. We want a driver who reaches the Dubai border from Abu Dhabi and who continues the journey to Fujairah to feel that he or she is travelling on the same speed limit.”
A six-lane motorway whittles down, for example, to a three-lane motorway, which can also cause crashes, he said.
In March this year, road-safety experts have called for a reduction of the speed limit buffer on UAE roads.
Experts believe that reducing the buffer by 10kph, coupled with more training for drivers in hazard perception, would help to reduce the risk of traffic collisions.
Maj Gen Al Zafeen also noted the lack of rest areas for lorry drivers, and the need to enforce a ban on lorries to enter the city which should be uniform all over the emirates.