5,150 tailgaters fined on Abu Dhabi roads
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Abu Dhabi - Tailgating was one of the main causes of traffic accidents between January and April
Abu Dhabi motorists said tailgaters were still a menace on some highways despite warnings from authorities about the dangers of not maintaining sufficient distance between vehicles.
The drivers said people sounding horns and flashing headlights to force them out of the way, are distracting them and this might lead them into causing accidents.
"I have on several occasions been chased out of the way by some reckless and stubborn drivers on the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway," said Peter M, a Filipino expat told Khaleej Times.
"As I was driving from Dubai during the evening and had reached Al Rahba, some two weeks ago, a motorist in a 4x4 was driving just inches behind me. He flashed headlights for several times so I could give him way despite cars occupying other lanes. I was almost hit by another as I moved to anther lane," he said.
Another driver, Mohammed Hassib, 32, said people tailgating him and flashing lights always scare him.
"Tailgaters are a menace on the roads. These reckless drivers always scare me as they try to push me out of the way," said Hassib.
"One time I was travelling to Dubai during the evening when a driver of a Porche car tried to force me out of the fast lane. He flashed me with the headlights and also used a horn to scare me. I was however hesitant to give him way because of other speeding vehicles surrounding me."
"Unfortunately I didn't record the car number plate otherwise I would have reported him to authorities."
Indian expat, Sajid Ali, 35, said it's absurd that many motorists were still not maintaining sufficient distance between vehicles despite authorities warning about its dangers.
"I see many reckless drivers tailgating other motorists especially on highways as they try to force them out of the way which is very risky as it leads to sudden change of lanes and could cause accidents," said Ali.
According to Abu Dhabi Police, eight people were killed and three seriously injured in 73 traffic accidents caused by tailgating in the first quarter of 2017.
Traffic authorities said tailgating was one of the main causes of traffic accidents between January and April, with 5,150 fines issued on Abu Dhabi roads.
"Not maintaining sufficient distance between vehicles increases the risk of rear-end collisions as motorists do not have sufficient time or distance to stop should the vehicle in front come to a sudden and unexpected halt," said Col Ahmed Al Zuwaidi, the director of main roads at Abu Dhabi Police's traffic and patrols directorate.
Col. Al Zeyoudi warned against tailgating, sounding horns and flashing headlights to force vehicles ahead to give way, as such behaviour distracts other motorists and increases the risk of accidents.
Thomas Edelman, Founder of Road Safety UAE.COM said their organisation tracks the UAE motorist's perception about dangerous in our 'UAE Road Safety Monitor' which is running 2 times a year.
"In the last wave of February 2017, 68 percent of UAE motorists see more motorists tailgating than 6 months ago," said Elderman.
"This is a very high number and it underlines once again that tailgating is still a serious issue on our roads. According to official data, tailgating remains the #3 cause of death on UAE's roads."
He noted that there was more need to educate drivers on the risks involved with tailgating using all possible media means so as to change their behavior as many don't know the dangers of tailgating.
Drivers caught tailgating are fined Dh400 and receive four black points on their licence.