The Abu Dhabi Police, represented by the Traffic and Patrols Directorate, impounded 280 vehicles for one month by the for traffic violations during the National Day celebrations between 1-5 December across Abu Dhabi. Offending motorists were also fined Dh 2,000 and had 12 black points added to their traffic record. Offences included instances of violating traffic laws and regulations; breaking the car decoration rules; causing disturbance and noise; driving recklessly or in a manner that endangers the public; making substantial changes to the vehicle's engine or body; driving without a license; and behaving in an uncivilized manner that is not in keeping with the Spirit of the Union.

According to Brigadier Eng. Hussein Ahmed Al Harithi, Director of Traffic and Patrols Directorate at Abu Dhabi Police, the offending drivers whose vehicles were impounded, had violated the car decoration guidelines and traffic laws, completely disregarding the extensive and comprehensive outreach campaign carried out by the directorate through various media in a bid to raise awareness. “As part of the  campaign, awareness-raising publications were distributed and awareness messages were broadcast through various media, explaining the full set of rules on car decoration during the UAE 43rd National Day celebrations, which was held under the theme, ‘Let's Celebrate the Spirit of the Union without Violations’. Compliance with these rules would ensure that the festivities are carried out in a befitting manner that is suitable for the level of the UAE’s modernity, development, respect of the law, and to maintain public safety,” he noted.

Adding further, Brigadier Eng. Al Harithi noted that some of the main violations committed during the 43rd National Day celebrations, included instances of using spray paint by the driver or the passenger and leaning or standing outside of the windows or sunroof of the vehicle. “Other violations include equipping vehicles with additions that impede visibility and compromise safety; equipping vehicles with sound amplifiers and noise-making accessories such as headers and filters; driving recklessly or in a manner that endangers the public; exceeding the permitted levels of car window tinting;  exceeding the number of passengers allowed; among other violations,” he continued.

The Director of Traffic and Patrols Directorate stated that as many as 23 miscellaneous traffic accidents occurred in Abu Dhabi (not related to the festivities) between 1-5 December;  causing three deaths and 11 serious injuries. The accidents included cases of run-over incidents and overturning. He also pointed out that the leading causes of accidents were failure to pay attention to the road; sudden swerving; over speeding with complete disregard of the road conditions; neglect; lack of attention; failure to maintain a sufficient safe distance between vehicles, among others.

Brigadier Eng. Al Harithi praised the high discipline demonstrated by motorists during the National Day, by respecting the car decoration guidelines, abiding by traffic laws and the instructions of traffic officers, and cooperating to ensure a smooth traffic flow. Moreover, he commended the efforts and cooperation of partners, the Department of Transport, the municipalities, and Saaed Company for Traffic Systems, which cooperated to provide traffic safety for all during the 43rd National Day celebrations.

Brigadier Eng. Al Harithi called on motorists to remove vehicle decoration, especially after the grace period expired on Saturday, to avoid fines or any of the relevant penalties mentioned in the list of 14 restrictions that has been published. Some of these restrictions include:  equipping vehicles with additions that impede visibility and compromise safety (e.g. installing a flag): a Dh 500 fine; and coloring the windshield or driver’s side window: impounding the vehicle for a month, in addition to a Dh 500 fine.

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