UAE: Up to Dh10,000 fine, jail for leaving children alone in cars

Parents will be prosecuted for negligence



by

A Staff Reporter

Published: Tue 30 Aug 2022, 4:50 PM

Last updated: Tue 30 Aug 2022, 10:36 PM

Leaving children unattended in vehicles is a crime under UAE laws and punishable with a hefty fine and even imprisonment, legal experts have reiterated. This came as authorities highlighted a recent case where the police rescued a child who got locked in a car as his mother went shopping.

Abd AlMeged Al Sweedy, senior associate, Galadari Advocates and Legal Consultants, told Khaleej Times that the practice comes under ‘negligence’ under Article 35 of the Wadeema Law. He said that according to Article 56 of the same law, the offence is punishable by imprisonment and/or a fine of up to Dh5,000 based on the “judge’s evaluation on a case-by-case basis”.

Youssef Khalaf, another senior associate, said in some instances, endangerment of the life and safety of people may be punishable by imprisonment/or a fine of up to Dh10,000.

Captain Mohammed Hamad Al Isai, director of Abu Dhabi Police Traffic and Patrols Directorate, had said recently that the practice exposes the lives of children to danger. Parents who leave their children behind in parked cars will be prosecuted for negligence, he stressed.

He referred to a tragic incident of a child who suffocated to death in the sweltering heat when his father forgot him inside the car. He said the father, who was busy attending to a work-related phone call throughout the trip, had forgotten the child, who was sleeping, when he stepped out and locked the car after reaching home.

The Dubai Police said recently that they rescued 36 children from locked vehicles since the beginning of the year.

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