Driving in the United Arab Emirates? Keep an eye out not only for road signs but also for road markings, which aid in traffic control and navigation. While road signs are more visible, you could overlook a road marker and end yourself with a traffic ticket.
Lanes designated for public buses, for example, are identified by a road marking that reads ‘Bus exclusively’ in Dubai or ‘Bus lane’ in Abu Dhabi. To designate a bus lane, the full lane may be painted red at times. If you mistakenly drive into the lane as a driver, you will be fined Dh600 in Dubai and Dh400 in Abu Dhabi.
Parking at a bus stop
The Integrated Transport Authority (ITC) of Abu Dhabi warned motorists on May 29 about the dangers of parking at bus stops. ITC demonstrated how parking cars in these places, even for a short time, is unsafe for road users since it makes it harder for buses to stop in the lay-by lane, according to a post on its official social media platforms.
In its post, ITC stated: “Parking in bus lay-by is prohibited as it endangers the safety of road users. Violating this rule will result in a Dh2,000 fine.”
ITC has previously expressed concern about how using bus stops to pick up or drop off passengers increases the danger of road accidents or causes bus service delays.
Driving in bus lanes in Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi Police also boosted awareness in 2020 about the fines that motorists face when they attempt to drive in lanes reserved for public buses and taxis. Crossing into a lane designated for public transportation, even for a short distance, will result in a Dh400 fine.
Driving in bus lanes in Dubai
The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) of Dubai has also built separate bus and taxi lanes in the Emirate.
RTA intends to extend this to over 48 kilometers in the next five years.
These bus lanes can be found in high-traffic regions, making it even more vital to pay attention to road markings in case you unintentionally choose the bus lane to avoid traffic. Look for the words ‘Bus only’ or ‘Only bus, taxi’ painted in large letters on the road to quickly identify the lane. A bus emblem may also be painted on the road, indicating that it is a lane allocated for public transportation.
These lanes are reserved not just for buses and taxis, but also for police cars, civil defense vehicles, and ambulances, according to the RTA. Radars keep a tight eye on these lanes to see if any private vehicles are using them, and motorists who break the rule are fined Dh600.
List of bus lanes in Dubai
The following is a list of bus lanes that are currently in use in Dubai. Keep an eye out for the following road markings if you happen to be driving through any of these areas:
- Al Mina Street to a point just before the intersection with Zabeel Street, in both directions.
- Naif Street – a 1km stretch
- Al Ittihad Road – 500m, exit before Al Nahda, Dubai, in the direction of Sharjah to Dubai
- Al Mina Street – 1,700m from Kuwait Street to the Falcon intersection
- Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah Street – 1.8km from Al Satwa R/A to Sheikh Rashid Street
- Al Khaleej Street – 1.7km from the Creek Street to Al Musalla Street
- Khalid bin Al Waleed Street – 100m from Al Mina Street Intersection to Street 16
- Al Ghubaiba Street – 500m from Al Mina Street intersection to Street 12