UAE Driving Licence: Who Pays Traffic Fines For Violations Made While Learning?

(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) Published: Wed 19 Jun 2024, 6:00 AM

Last updated: Wed 19 Jun 2024, 7:43 AM

It was for the first time that Myla (name changed) was on the road after weeks of theoretical driving lessons. Her hands were sweaty and she was obviously nervous. She was driving within the speed limit but the motorist behind her honked stubbornly and she got distracted. Myla suddenly swerved and it was a typical traffic violation.

In the UAE, sudden swerving costs a motorist a fine of Dh1,000 and four black points on his/ her licence. But in the case of Myla, she's still a learner and she has yet to acquire a driving licence. So, who will get the penalty?

Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) clarified to Khaleej Times:“If anyone commits a traffic violation while learning to drive, the driving institute is fined.”

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Myla did not disclose where she's taking driving lessons but she said she apologised to her instructor. She will still continue taking her driving classes.

Instructor's responsibilities

Wajahat Noor, manager of the Instructor Training Centre at Emirates Driving Institute (EDI), explained:“It is the instructor's responsibility to take care of the safety of the leaner, the training vehicle, as well as other road users.

“There are many difficult situations where learners are vulnerable to committing mistakes, hence instructors need to be extra cautious in any given situation, for example, sharp curve, roundabout, traffic light, merging from minor to major road with stop or give way sign, lane change, two-way traffic with many vulnerable road users such as pedestrians, cyclists, e-scooter riders getting close to front vehicle, as well as highway and road conditions.

“If there are mistakes from learners that can lead to accidents or fines, they will be considered the instructor's fault, and ultimately, the instructor will be responsible,” Noor underscored.

Proper guidance, instructions

Noor said the job of a professional driving instructor is challenging.“They are tasked to provide proper guidance and instructions to their students. They must ensure that learners completely understand the rules, and they must be patient while teaching,” he added.

“The instructors must also remain calm and focused while on the road so their students can drive safely. They must not only have the right knowledge and experience to successfully teach the learners, but must also always be on top of every situation,” Noor underscored.

It is also important for the driving instructor to communicate effectively with the student driver by providing adequate and immediate feedback to help them develop their driving skills before acquiring a licence.

Noor added training vehicles are equipped with safety features and driving instructors use cars with dual controls and brakes for teaching their students to prevent accidents during driving lessons.

Focus on novice drivers

Meanwhile, road safety specialist, Thomas Edelmann, founder and managing director of RoadSafetyUAE, said there must be a strong focus on new drivers.

He noted, based on latest 'open data' on road safety statistics for 2023 released by the Ministry of Interior (MOI), 15 per cent of major accidents were caused by new driving license holders.

“This calls for stakeholders to do their bit in raising awareness for safe conduct and we call on driving schools, universities, employers, and parents to be cognizant of their responsibilities,” Edelmann underscored.

He noted that safe driving habits can be instilled as early as possible, even in kindergarten and school. Mandatory road safety curriculum in schools can introduced, like in the case of other countries. Edelmann also called on revisiting the driving school curricula.

“Acquiring a driver's licence is a good achievement. But it comes with a lot of responsibility and motorists must always demonstrate their ability to drive safely on the road,” he underscored.

Constant safety reminders

RoadSafetyUAE also shared the following safety reminders for all motorists:

  • Wear seat belts all the time
  • Obey speed limits
  • Keep proper distance between cars
  • Always use the indicator
  • Avoid banned substances
  • Focus on the road and don't get distracted by passengers and mobile phones
  • Avoid driving with (young) passengers, until you feel safe and have gained experience to take responsibility for the lives of others
  • Share safe driving tips and tricks
  • Be involved and caring on the road always


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Khaleej Times

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