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Tailgating traffic cameras to be activated in Abu Dhabi

Traffic cameras designed to be able to spot tailgating are to be activated on the roads of Abu Dhabi on Wednesday 15th January.

On Monday, police used Twitter to show a video that demonstrated a number of instances of tailgating on the motorways of Abu Dhabi.

Police say that motorists who fail to leave enough distance from the car in front will be warned via text message that the next time they are caught tailgating, they will be fined.

If the smart system does catch the same driver again, they will be fined Dh400 and their licence will be given four black points.

It is not yet clear of the distance at which the cameras will determine a vehicle to be tailgating, though the road speed limit is likely to be a factor in this determination.

Police say that one of the five primary causes of death on the roads of the United Arab Emirates is tailgating.

Awareness campaigns will be used in conjunction with the smart system to prevent negative behaviour that causes fatal traffic accidents, says Abu Dhabi Police’s traffic and patrols directorate director Brigadier General Mohammed Al Humairi.

An awareness campaign about the danger of tailgating and the new cameras is to be rolled out in as many as five languages.

A UAE University study in 2019 demonstrated that 50% of all traffic accidents that took place from 2012 to 2017 were the result of reckless driving and tailgating.

The great majority of the drivers responsible were between the ages of 18 and 24, according to the study.

A Road Safety UAE survey conducted last year found that 25% of young drivers had tailgated other cars.

It has previously been impractical to develop technology that is capable of correctly measuring the distance between motor vehicles.

The introduction of tailgating cameras to the roads of Dubai was announced by the emirate’s police five years ago back in 2015.

However, by May 2016, they had still not been activated because of logistical obstacles, according to the Federal Traffic Council’s director Major General Mohammed Al Zafeen.

The new cameras are likely to result in an improvement in road safety, according to the Saeed Society to Reduce Traffic Accidents’ executive director Brigadier Jamal Al Ameri.

Motorists will be forced to obey road rules and the negative behaviour of drivers young and old will be controlled because of their desire to avoid fines, Al Ameri believes.

Smart radars such as the Vitronic radar that are in use all across the UAE are able to detect numerous traffic offences, but drivers also need to be more aware of the need to leave a certain amount of space between vehicles.

Motorists should leave the same space that would be between two lampposts between their vehicles to be safe, Al Ameri says.

Anyone who drives a motor vehicle in the UAE is legally required to have taken out at least basic third-party car insurance coverage.