Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Community report - GULF NEWS - Dt. 21.09.2010 - Coping with fog

Community report - GULF NEWS - Dt. 21.09.2010 - Coping with fog

Coping with fog

Road signs on Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway need an overhaul

Text and picture by Ramesh Menon, Gulf News Reader Published: 00:00 September 21, 2010

Gulf News reader Ramesh Menon predicts the return of foggy days and urged the authorities to plan ahead in order to make residents’ commutes smooth and hassle-free. He took this photograph last year on the Ghantoot highway. Image Credit: Ramesh Menon/Gulf News reader We witnessed one of the worst road accidents in the UAE back in 2008, on the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway near Ghantoot.

For regular road users of this highway, it was not a surprise. The sudden weather change and lack of visibility during early mornings is a regular phenomenon on desert roads.

Now, the weather seems to be changing once again to foggy days. Accordingly, during early morning drives on the Abu Dhabi-Dubai highway, we can see several fog pockets, especially after the Ghantoot area. It gets very dangerous to drive with less than 30 metres visibility.

Along the route, there are major exits from the highway and all these have signboards placed on the right side of the road. During foggy days and when there is heavy vehicle traffic, these signboards are difficult to spot.

In order to avoid this dangerous situation, I suggest that the authorities:

- Introduce a new road signage system. Signboards near major exits can have luminescent paint, along with clear markings on roads. These should be present well in advance, so that drivers do not get worried and are not misguided, even in case of extreme foggy or dusty conditions.

- An increase in the installation of electronic road signs so that drivers are cautioned if there is danger ahead.

- An increase in police patrols on foggy days, especially on the Dubai-Abu Dhabi highway and Emirates Road.

I am optimistic that this system will be very effective, specifically on Emirates Road, Shaikh Zayed Road towards Abu Dhabi and Shaikh Rashid Road towards Dubai.

— The reader is a technical officer, based in Abu Dhabi

To read it in original, please visit GULF NEWS Online.
Model of the suggestion as presented to the authorities for consideration.

1 comment:

  1. Website comment Added 11:52 September 21, 2010
    Thanks To the Citizen Reporter Mr Ramesh for highlighting the importance of driving during foggy conditions. some of us do need to know this especially when driving on high ways. When traveling through foggy conditions slow down. Fog creates low visibility. Thus, accidents can occur regardless of experience. In fact, most fog related fatalities are the result of a careless driver speeding on the highway. Although some foggy conditions will not interfere with visibility, it is important to keep fog lights on at all times. If traveling through thick fog, turn on regular lights. It may be tempting to drive with high beams glaring. However, this could interfere with other driver's ability to see, which could result in a collision.Rather than relying on other cars to guide you through fog, drive in the left lane, and keep a close eye on the white lines in the road. This way, you are able to remain in your lane.
    Mathew Litty, Dubai, United Arab Emirates