UAE motorists warned to prepare for the road
SHARJAH // Know the speed limit, abide by local laws, do not drive recklessly and make sure a vehicle is roadworthy. These are just some of the key travel tips for motorists from the UAE planning to visit other GCC countries by road.
Ahead of next month’s Eid Al Adha holidays, Sharjah Traffic Police have launched a campaign aimed at ensuring those driving to neighbouring nations follow the rules, which can vary by country.
“Car [window] tinting exceeding 30 per cent is not allowed in GCC countries. They also now detain drivers for exceeding speed limits,” said Lt Saud Al Sheiba of the Traffic Awareness department.
“The length of detention is decided by how much the driver exceeded the speed limit. The vehicle gets impounded as well.”
Lt Al Sheiba said that motorists in Oman caught driving at more than 75kph above the speed limit would be detained for 48 hours and have their car impounded.
Holidaymakers should have all their documents, including insurance papers and identification cards, in order.
“Travellers should make sure that all proper documentation is with them while travelling, including car registration and driving licence. Car insurance documents should be with them at all time,” he said. He suggested keeping emergency contact numbers handy.
Mechanic Ihsan Noor Eldeen said it was wise to ensure a vehicle was in good working order before setting off on a long trip.
“Motorists should make sure that the oil and water levels are monitored at all times. Tyres, brakes and the AC should be in excellent condition to avoid problems on the road.”
He suggested a vehicle be taken to a garage for maintenance a month before the travel date. “If they bring in their vehicle a couple of days before travelling they might not end up fixing it and risk problems on the road.”
Younes Saleem was forced to drive part of his 2,994-kilometre journey from Sharjah to his family’s home in Jordan for the Eid Al Fitr holiday without AC after the unit broke down.
“I went to the mechanic a couple of weeks before my travel date and I checked everything in the car, making sure they were in top condition. I let the mechanics clean out my air-conditioner unit and replace the compressor because it was giving me problems,” said the Jordanian.
However, after crossing the border into Saudi Arabia, the AC stopped working.
“The compressor malfunctioned and there was no immediate fix. The mechanics said it would take a lot of time, which would delay our trip.”
Mr Saleem drove through the night to avoid the worst of the heat. “The heat was unbearable,” said the father-of-three.
Lt Al Sheiba encouraged motorists to pull over if they felt drowsy.
“Drivers should take a proper rest if feeling tired. They should alternate driving with others in the car so that they don’t lose focus or fall asleep while driving.”
Published: August 2, 2015 04:00 AM