Smart cameras on Naif Road to catch offenders
Motorists driving on bus, taxi lanes will be slapped with Dh600 fine from April 1
Dubai — Seven new smart cameras have been installed on Naif Road to catch offenders who drive in the dedicated bus and taxi lane.
Smart cameras installed at a spot along the bus and taxi lane on Naif Road. — KT photo by Leslie Pableo
Beginning April 1, offenders who are caught driving in the bus and taxi lanes will be fined Dh600, according to Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) officials. The bus and taxi lane on Naif Road is the first lane in Dubai to be monitored by cameras.
Testing for the new initiative called ‘Project Masar’ began in January and since then, there has been a 63 per cent reduction in traffic related congestion on Naif Road.
The smart cameras are designed to spot private vehicles plying on these lanes. The violations will be reported via these cameras, and/or by the Dubai Police patrols.
Officials said that the main purpose of the cameras is to encourage people to use public transport as the primary means of transport. The system would be implemented in the initial phase on the bus and taxi-only lane extending one kilometre on Naif Road, which serves 20 routes and is used by more than 300 RTA public buses per day (2,431 journeys per day).
“Until now, the Dubai Police would manually fine offenders spotted using the lane. Now with the help of the new smart cameras, private vehicle owners’ number plates will be distinguished from public transport vehicles,” said Dr Yousef Mohammed Al Ali, CEO of RTA’s Public Transport Agency. As of now there are 30 locations across Dubai, which are manually monitored by the Dubai Police. “Depending on the success on Naif Road, cameras will be installed on the other dedicated bus and taxi lanes as well,” added Ali.
The 1km stretch on Naif Road serves nine bus routes and is used by 36 buses an hour (during peak hours).
“Only public buses, taxis, police vehicles, civil defence vehicles and ambulances attending to emergencies are permitted to use the lanes. Private vehicles can cross the dedicated bus and taxi lane only when entering or exiting subsidiary roads,” he said.
The enforcement of the offence code on dedicated bus and taxi lanes is intended to increase the share of public transit means, ease traffic congestions, improve the efficiency of on-time bus arrivals, cut the duration of taxi trips, reduce the direct and indirect operational costs of public transit means, and curb carbon emission polluting the environment.
In 2010, the RTA introduced Phase I of the bus and taxi only lanes system stretching about six kilometres covering Al Mankhool Street (from Satwa roundabout to Shaikh Rashid Street).
Then, from Al Khaleej Street (from the intersection of Khalid Bin Al Waleed Street up to Al Musalla Street opposite to Hyatt Regency Hotel), Khalid Bin Al Waleed Street (from the intersection of Al Mina Street to Street 16), and Al Ghubaiba Street (from the intersection of Al Mina Street to Street 12).
“In 2011, the RTA embarked on Phase II of the project which covered parts of Naif Street extending one kilometre from Al Musalla Street to Al Khaleej Street, and parts of Ittihad Street extending one kilometre in the direction from Sharjah to Dubai starting from the outskirts of Dubai up to Al Nahda Interchange,” concluded the CEO of Public Transport Agency.
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